Two people dead after massive explosion rocks IL silicon factory

Plant fire

4 injured, 3 unaccounted for after explosion at Illinois silicone plant: reports

An explosion rocked parts of an IL town Friday night, killing one person, injuring four others and leaving two missing, authorities said.

Nine employees were inside the plant when the explosion occurred around 9:30 p.m. Friday at AB Specialty Silicones in Waukegan, some 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of Chicago.

Waukegan Fire Marshal Steven Lenzi says the search for the bodies that was halted Saturday, May 4 was set to begin again on Sunday morning, May 5.

A "catastrophic explosion" left at least two people dead and others injured or unaccounted for at a silicone plant in IL on May 3, 2019.

AB Specialty Silicones, which owns the plant, manufactures and distributes various grades of silicone products, CBS Chicago reported. A representative for the company was not immediately available for comment.

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Howard Cooper announced that a second body has been located in the ruble at the site of the Waukegan plant explosion and one other body remains missing.

Images of the plant from local media showed its walls stripped away, leaving only a shell of a building with girders and scraps of roofing material. The Lake County Coroner's Office has officials at the scene.

"It's just not safe to operate", Lenzi said.

Two people were transported to Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan and two were taken to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville.

Hours later, another worker who was inside the factory at the time of the blast died in hospital, where they were being treated for injuries.

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Florip said he would "categorize this as a massive explosion".

Lenzi said in excess of 100 personnel were involved in putting out the fire and securing the scene.

According to officials, the explosion also damaged at least five other buildings in the area and damages are estimated that they will be in excess of one $1,000,000.

Lenzi said three employees were unaccounted for.

Lenzi recalled one "fire instance" there over the past 10 years. "We have had no instances as far as code violations or anything like that with the plant".

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