Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Worker Lawrence Bass with Orbital ATK, died after an explosion at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, MO

Army identifies worker killed in Missouri plant explosion

Associated Press
April 12, 2017 — 3:25pm

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A worker who died during an explosion at an ammunition plant in Missouri has been identified as a 55-year-old man from suburban Kansas City.

The U.S. Army says Lawrence Bass, of Blue Springs, Missouri, died Tuesday after the blast at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence.

Contractor Orbital ATK, which operates the plant, says Bass had worked there 35 years and was an operator in the primer mixing operation.

Four other workers were treated at the scene. The explosion occurred in a building where chemicals are mixed. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is leading the investigation.

The plant makes and tests small-caliber ammunition for the military and operates the NATO test center.

Orbital is the biggest maker of small-caliber ammunition for the U.S. Department of Defense.


INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- One person has died and four were injured after an explosion at an Independence ammunition plant on Tuesday.

A spokesperson for Lake City Army Ammunition Plant said in a statement that an explosion occurred at approximately 1 p.m. in a mixing building that resulted in one fatality and four employees being evaluated on scene, who each refused further medical treatment. The deceased victim’s identity has not yet been released.

The 707,000-square foot facility, established in 1940, manufactures small-caliber munitions for the U.S. Army and operates the NATO test center, which performs ammunition reliability testing and weapon testing.

Plant representatives spoke to the media at 4 p.m. Tuesday.

Lt. Col. Eric Dennis, Lake City Commander, said making ammunition is "dangerous work, and our employees risk their lives to protect our men and women in uniform. This is a sacrifice they make to support our country, and I am humbled by the ultimate sacrifice this employee made today."

Dennis said the explosion was in a primer mixing facility, where various chemical agents are mixed to create the compounds used in ammunition.

Mark Carrick, deputy fire chief in Independence, said the plant has its own fire brigade that is working on the explosion.

The scene has been secured and the ATF is on site to conduct an investigation.

Dennis said the plant has approximately 1,800 government and contractor employees. All workers involved in the accident were employed by contractor Orbital ATK.

Obital ATK Vice President and General Manager Jim Nichols said he was truly saddened by the incident.

"I'd just like to say we're a family out here at Lake City, and today we lost a family member, and our hearts truly go out to the family of the member that we lost," Nichols said.

All workers were sent home Tuesday. Nichols said employees are encouraged to call their "building hotline number" before returning to work Wednesday.

An explosion previously occurred at the plant in 2011. Nichols said no one was injured in that incident.

Dennis took over command of the facility on July 13, 2016, and oversaw a $434 million modernization program that " improved security, safety, manufacturing and infrastructure" at the plant, according to a U.S. Army news release.

Lt. Col. Davis said the building where this happened today did not see any upgrades, or have any changes from that modernization program.

NASDAQ reported Tuesday morning that Orbital ATK had secured a $92 million order from the U.S. Army to be manufactured at the Lake City plant. The report also says that last week the company secured a $21 million contract with the U.S. Navy, and in January received a $50 million order from the U.S. government to supply ammunition to the Department of Defense "in support of international allies."

NASDAQ reports that Orbital ATK is the largest manufacturer of small-caliber ammunition for the U.S. Department of Defense. In the past 17 years, it has manufactured more than 17 billion rounds of small-caliber ammunition at the Independence plant.

U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill said in a statement, “I’m praying for the family of the employee who was killed today at the Lake City plant, and I’m hopeful for a speedy recovery for those injured. I’ll remain in close touch with the Army as we determine how this tragic incident occurred & how we can ensure employee safety.”

Lake City has a government staff of 29 Dept. of Army Civilians and one soldier "to provide contract oversight," the plant spokesperson said in a statement.

The plant consists of 408 buildings, 43 magazines, 9 warehouses, and 11 igloos across 3,935 acres of land.

11-year-old killed in crash on I-40 near Benson, NC after the boy's mom attempted a U-turn in the median; 3 others also injured

11-year-old black teen killed in crash on I-40 near Benson, NC
after the boy's black mom attempted a U-turn in the median

Updated 32 mins ago
BENSON, North Carolina (WTVD) -- The North Carolina Highway Patrol says a child died in Tuesday's fiery crash on I-40 west of the I-95 junction near Benson.
It happened three miles west of Exit 325 (NC-242) around 1 p.m.

image courtesy Norma Gould

Pictures from Chopper 11 showed a burned car near the median and an SUV near it with heavy front end damage.

Troopers said the crash happened when a woman driving a Nissan Murano tried to make a U-turn in the median and was hit from behind by a Hyundai Tucson. The force of the collision pushed the Nissan through the median and into the westbound lanes of I-40 where it was hit by a Toyota Highlander and a Volvo tractor trailer.

The Nissan then caught fire.

The dead boy has been identified as Isaiah Jones of Raleigh. Trooper said his mother - 32-year-old Angela Jones of Raleigh - was taken to UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill where she was listed in critical condition in the NC Jaycee Burn Center.

Angela Jones (Image via Facebook)
Her other son - 9-year-old Daniel Jones - has minor injuries.

Troopers said two women from Garner were also injured in the wreck. Kaitlin Brundidge, 20, and Jennifer Brundidge, 48, were taken to WakeMed with serious injuries.

Kaitlin Brundidge was discharged, but Jennifer is still in the hospital in serious condition, according to WakeMed.

Chemical Release at MGPI Industries; Investigators Note Insufficient Safety Design Features and Shortcomings in Emergency Shutdown Devices

Today the U.S. Chemical Safety Board released preliminary findings from its ongoing investigation of the toxic chemical release that occurred at the MGPI Processing plant in Atchison, Kansas, on October 21, 2016. The CSB’s investigation into the release has identified several shortcomings in the design and labeling of loading stations, as well as adherence to chemical unloading procedures.

The MGPI facility produces distilled spirits and specialty wheat proteins and starches. The chemical release occurred when sulfuric acid was inadvertently unloaded from a tanker truck into a fixed sodium hypochlorite tank at the plant. The two materials combined to produce chlorine gas that sent over 140 individuals, both workers and members of the public, to area hospitals and resulted in shelter-in-place and evacuation orders for thousands of local residents.

Chairperson Vanessa Allen Sutherland said, “This type of accident is preventable. Our investigation demonstrates all too clearly that complacency with routine practices and procedures can result in severe consequences. A reaction that produced thousands of pounds of a hazardous chemical had the potential be much more serious – the CSB’s aim is to issue clear safety improvements which can be made to similar facilities across the country.”

The CSB’s investigation found that at about 7:35 am, a tanker truck from Harcros Chemicals arrived at the MGPI facility to deliver sulfuric acid. There, a facility operator escorted the driver to a locked loading area. The operator unlocked the gate to the fill lines and also unlocked the sulfuric acid fill line.

The CSB found that the facility operator likely did not notice that the sodium hypochlorite fill line was also already unlocked before returning to his work station. The driver connected the sulfuric acid discharge hose from the truck into the sodium hypochlorite fill line. The line used to transfer sulfuric acid looked similar to the sodium hypochlorite line, and the two lines were located in close proximity.

As a result of the incorrect connection, thousands of gallons of sulfuric acid from the tanker truck entered the facility’s sodium hypochlorite tank. The resulting mixture created a dense green cloud, which traveled northeast of the facility until the wind shifted the cloud northwest towards a more densely populated area of town. The CSB investigation concluded that emergency shutdown mechanisms were not in place or were not actuated from either a remote location at the facility or in the truck. The CSB found a number of design deficiencies that increased the likelihood of an incorrect connection, such as the close proximity of the fill lines, and unclear and poorly placed chemical labels.

In addition, the CSB found that both MGPI and Harcros did not follow internal procedures for unloading operations. CSB Investigator-in-Charge Lucy Tyler said, “Unloading activities occur at thousands of facilities across the country every day. This event should serve to remind industry to review their own chemical unloading operations and work with motor carriers to ensure chemicals are unloaded safely.”

The CSB is an independent, non-regulatory federal agency whose mission is to drive chemical safety change through independent investigations to protect people and the environment. The agency’s board members are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical incidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems. For more information, contact

Daniel Crawford with 640 Energy LLC severely burned as the result of an explosion from a leaking propane tank in Williams County, ND

Worker injured in Saturday blast
Cause of blaze under investigation

By Elizabeth Hackenburg
Apr 11, 2017

A worker was severely burned as the result of an explosion at a Williams County oilfield business on Saturday afternoon, local and state officials say.

The cause of the fire and how the man was injured are still under investigation by the state fire marshal, according to Williston Rural Fire Chief Dave Benth, who said firefighters arrived about 3 p.m. to find an industrial building on 145th Avenue NW engulfed in flames.

A gofundme account has been set up for Daniel Crawford, who, according to an update on the site, is now in critical but stable condition at a hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota.

He was initially flown to the hospital in Williston and later transferred out of state, Benth said.

Crawford is an employee of 640 Energy LLC, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which was notified of the incident on Monday.

“We will be investigating,” Eric Brooks, head of the agency’s Bismarck office, said.

It took firefighters about three hours to completely extinguish the blaze, which broke out at a trucking business where propane was kept, Benth said.

Investigators are not considering the fire suspicious, but are looking further into what happened in the moments leading up to an explosion and Crawford’s injuries.

The gofundme account can be found here:

About 640 Energy LLC

High efficiency frac water heating.
Water depots.


Worker hurt in explosion showing signs of progress

By Elizabeth Hackenburg
10 hrs ago

A Williston man is showing signs of progress in a Minnesota burn unit, where he underwent surgery Tuesday morning after suffering serious injuries in an explosion over the weekend.

Daniel Crawford received second and third-degree burns over 80 percent of his body after leaking propane ignited while he was working on a truck Saturday afternoon in Williams County.

Crawford, who is in his early 50s, is expected to remain in the hospital for months, but is already responding to basic requests from nurses, Sandra Erwin, a longtime family friend, said.

“He’s opened his eyes for his son, he did that yesterday,” she said. “The nurses have asked him to do specific things and he has done them, so they think he is aware.”

Erwin set up a gofundme account to help Crawford’s family afford his medical care and other expenses as they travel to be with him in the hospital.

She’s raised about $1,400 so far.

“Even $5 to that (account) — it goes right to the family,” she said.

The state fire marshal is investigating the incident, which took place at a trucking business on 145th Avenue NW. A report on the cause of the fire is expected by next week.

Investigators believe Crawford was working on a propane tank truck when leaking propane somehow ignited, causing an explosion, Williston Rural Fire Chief Dave Benth said.

It’s unclear how much propane was on the truck, although there are indications that the 3,000 gallon tank was about 70 percent full, he said.

The truck was parked in front of an industrial building at the time of the explosion, which destroyed the structure.

Crawford, an employee of 640 Energy LLC, has lived in Williston for about four years, Erwin said. A Michigan native, he is a father and grandfather, and an avid motorcyclist.

The Williston Area Riders, a motorcycle group, is planning a benefit ride to help with long term expenses, although the event has not yet been scheduled, Erwin said.

Crawford’s gofundme account can be found here

Daniel Crawford was injured in a fire today. He's burned on over 80% of his body, and will be in the ICU in St Paul MN for months. His family needs all the help they can get with travel and medical expenses as well as all the prayers in the world. Dan is a wonderful, caring guy who's family means more to him than anything. Please pray for him! 

Postal worker's leg completely severed after being struck by a reckless driver while delivering mail in North Babylon on Long Island, NY

NORTH BABYLON, N.Y. (AP) — Police say a postal worker is in critical condition after being struck by a car while delivering mail on Long Island.

It happened at about 2 p.m. Tuesday in North Babylon.

Suffolk County police say the postal worker standing outside his vehicle loading mail into a bag when he was struck from behind by a Lincoln Continental. The car then struck the postal truck, a fire hydrant and a telephone pole.

A witness told NBC New York the postal workers leg had been completely severed. He was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital.

Police say the driver remained at the scene and was later arrested on reckless driving charges. 



A U.S. postal worker was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital for treatment Tuesday April 11, 2017, after he was struck by a car in North Babylon, Suffolk County police said. A car struck the worker, his delivery van, a fire hydrant and a utility pole, a police statement said.

A U.S. postal worker was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital after he was struck by a car in North Babylon on Tuesday afternoon, Suffolk County police said.

The postal worker, who was not in his vehicle when he was hit on Prairie Drive by a Lincoln Continental headed west, was in critical condition, the police statement said.

A five-alarm fire ripped through a food warehouse in Passaic, New Jersey leaving 80 neighbors displaced

Wednesday, April 12, 2017 05:41AM
PASSAIC, New Jersey (WABC) -- A smoky five-alarm fire that started in a commercial building in Passaic forced evacuations Tuesday night.

The fire started inside a one-story building on First Street just after 10 p.m.

Several firefighters sustained minor injuries. It was under control by 4:30 a.m.

Passaic Mayor Hector Lora, in a video on Facebook, said residents who live in apartments from 83 to 93 Market St., should seek shelter at city hall.

He also said there was a localized power outage in the area.

The Passaic Valley Water Commission put out an alert late Tuesday on Twitter to advise customers that they can expect poor pressure and discolored water.


PASSAIC, New Jersey

A five-alarm fire that began in a warehouse late Tuesday forced several people out of their homes and into shelters, according to multiple reports.

The fire began just after 10 p.m. in the structure on First Street. The blaze was not under control until 4:30 a.m., according to

A roof collapsed before the fire spread to the apartments on Market Street, according to Mayor Hector Lora, who posted a video on Facebook.


PASSAIC — A five-alarm blaze ripped through a food warehouse in Passaic overnight, leaving three firefighters injured and about 80 neighbors displaced from nearby homes, officials said.

It took more than three hours to bring the fire in the single-story commercial building under control, fire crews said.

Three firefighters were taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation, one case severe, but they were released early Wednesday morning, said Walter Porto, the city's Office of Emergency Management coordinator.

The fire, which was first reported by a passer-by about 10:15 p.m., started in a distribution company building at 88 First Street, Porto said. It quickly spread to buildings on Market Street, displacing 30 families.

The initial call about the fire came in from someone who saw smoke when walking by the building. "He didn't have a phone so he ran around the corner and found one and called 911," Porto said.

Passaic Mayor Hector Lora, through a video on Facebook, advised residents at addresses from 83 to 93 Market St. to seek shelter at city hall.

When trying to bring people to the nearby senior center at City Hall, the smoke got heavy and many left, Porto said. About 30 people were on hand at the shelter Wednesday morning.

Flames were visible from blocks away, said resident Steve Peralta, 15.

"I live a few blocks away near the fire station and I heard the alarms so I looked. You could see the orange flames and gray smoke. I thought they would stop it but it just spread," Peralta said.

The Passaic Fire Department continues to hit hot spots with water after a 5th Alarm fire on 1st St Wednesday morning. (Photo: Tariq Zehawi/

The Red Cross announced this morning it is assisting six families who have been displaced due to the fire. The organization's Disaster Action Team was dispatched to the scene and provided 39 people within those six families with temporary lodging, food and clothing. Red Cross volunteers will remain to provide support, counseling and referrals for the families.

The First Street building will be condemned, Porto said. Because of water and smoke damage, the buildings on Market Street will be inaccessible for several days.

Other fire departments, including Clifton, helped at the scene.

The Passaic Valley Water Commission put out an alert late Tuesday on Twitter advising customers to expect poor pressure and discolored water.

Due to the conditions, the investigation into the cause of the blaze won't begin until later Wednesday