Eight Injured in Granite City Explosion

Two men are in critical condition and eight others were injured after an explosion Thursday morning at Amsted Rail in Granite City (IL), reports BND.com.

The two men critically injured were airlifted to Mercy Hospital St. Louis. A third person was airlifted from Granite City to Missouri.

A total of 10 injured workers were transported to Gateway on Thursday morning. Of these 10, three were airlifted and seven were treated and released from Gateway.

United Steelworkers of America Local 1063 President Robert Lott, who represents workers at the plant, said he was in the building and standing about 100 yards from the scene of the explosion when it happened. Lott said Reginald Golliday, who has worked at the railroad carriage manufacturing plant for the past 17 years, may have suffered two broken legs, a large gash on his forehead and internal injuries. He also said that Danny Wilson, a 10-year veteran at the plant, suffered a broken leg and internal injuries.

Granite City Fire Department Assistant Chief Jim Snelson said the fire department was called at 8:10 a.m.

Lott said the explosion caused a blackout at the plant. He said he believed the blast was caused by a gas leak under a wooden platform where workers were standing.

"I could see flames, initially, and then the visibility went down to zero from the dust that fell from the rafters," Lott said.
Lott said a similar explosion happened at the factory about 20 years ago.

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