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Injured employee survives Illinois chemical plant fire

On behalf of of Frederick & Hagle posted in Workplace Injuries on Friday, June 7, 2013.

Evacuations continue in a community nearby the site of a serious explosion and fire at a Seward, Illinois chemical processing plant. The incident took place on a recent Sunday afternoon, leaving many nearby residents uneasy about their safety. Authorities moved quickly to begin evacuating those who live within a two-mile radius of the site. The scope of the damage could have been devastating, but as of yet there are reports of only one injured employee.

There is no word on the specific nature of the injuries sustained by a worker at the chemical processing plant. The facility processes one liquid chemical that is water-reactive and corrosive, and is used in the manufacture of electronics. No residents of nearby areas have reported injuries associated with the fire.

There will be further inquiry into the circumstance surrounding the fire. Authorities are working to determine how it started and whether negligence or improper procedures contributed to the incident. A team from the EPA is expected to arrive in the coming days to investigate the incident.

As for the injured employee, he or she is likely in the early stages of recovering from the workplace injury sustained during the explosion and fire. Should the results of the investigation reveal that the proper safety standards were not met, or that negligence played a causal role in the fire, the employee could decide to move forward with a lawsuit against the responsible party. While some occupations are inherently more dangerous than others, each and every Illinois employee should be able to go to work with the knowledge that their safety and well-being is of top concern to their employer.

Source: abclocal.go.com, “Evacuations continue in Seward after Illinois chemical fire,” June 3, 2013

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