Two dead and two missing after USA plant explosion

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A massive explosion in a silicon plant in northern IL sent at least four people to the hospital late Friday night.

It happened shortly before 10 p.m. Friday at the AB Specialty Silicones in Waukegan, Illinois.

Waukegan Fire Marshal Steve Lenzi said several workers are unaccounted for, Lake and McHenry County Scanner reports.

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.

Meanwhile, the search for the other two missing workers was suspended due to intense structural damage.

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Hazardous materials technicians and other teams examined the scene, Lenzi said. One body was found at the site early Saturday.

They were searching for the bodies of two of the nine workers who were there when an explosion rocked the building Friday night and left it a shattered skeleton.

Nine employees were inside the plant when the explosion occurred. He referred further questions to the coroner's office.

Authorities later said they do not believe there is cause for concern about air quality or a need to shelter in place. Of the surviving employees, four were transported to area hospitals and two declined medical treatment.

Two others at the plant, a 30,000-square-foot facility that operates 24 hours a day, were able to walk away unharmed.

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Emergency personnel work at the scene of an explosion at AB Specialty Silicones on Sunset Ave. and Northwestern Ave. on the border between Gurnee, Ill., and Waukegan on Saturday, May 4, 2019. The state fire marshal is investigating, along with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

The explosion was heard and felt across the county, which is halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee, Wis. The plant was open at the time of the explosion, he said.

At least five other buildings in the area were also damaged, reported CNN.

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

"It was leveled. It's right across from the emission testing station", she said, in reference to a state of IL facility. "We are working to determine the cause", the sheriff's office said.

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