On Tuesday afternoon, the ARI chemical plant in Orchard Hill exploded and injured two workers. One of the workers was reportedly covered with third-degree burns on 90 percent of his body. First responders reported that the fire was put out by the sprinkler system, but officials had locals stay away from the area for about 90 minutes following the explosion.
The severely-burned worker was, unfortunately, unable to get immediate medical care. Burn injury victims are often airlifted to the nearest burn treatment center, but a thunderstorm kept a helicopter from being able to retrieve him. Both workers were eventually rushed to different hospitals—the severely-injured patient's condition is currently unknown.
The Cause of the Explosion
Initial reports from fire crews believe that the explosion was triggered by an accident in the plant's mixing room, which may have involved acetone. The report indicates that the mixing process required the equipment to be grounded—something that one of the employees may not have done. ARI produces household chemical products, mostly insect-repellent and aerosolized cleaning supplies.
Initial reports said that the explosion might have been caused by lightning, but the most recent reports cite the ungrounded equipment as the cause. The Spalding County Fire Department will release details as the investigation continues.
Our chemical plant explosion lawyers hope for the full recovery of both workers as quickly as possible.