CA: One killed in fire and blast at Richmond plastics factory--shelter in place order given : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Posted at 5:56 p.m. PDT Thursday, October 26, 2000

One killed in fire and blast at Richmond plastics factory Mecury News wire services

An explosion and fire rocked a plastics factory Thursday, killing one worker and injuring at least four others.

Because of smoke from the blaze, people living nearby were told to stay indoors and keep their windows closed, and classes were canceled at seven schools.

One body was found inside the factory building and four firefighters were taken to hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation.

Traffic over the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, a major local commuter artery, was allowed to pass toll-free as toll-takers were ordered to remain indoors.

The fire was first reported at about 2 a.m. by witnesses who said they heard two explosions at the plant. While fire department said it had brought the blaze under control by 8 a.m., smoldering remnants continued to create smoke over the area during the morning commute.

Officials said a ``shelter in place'' order was given as a precaution, and that while prolonged exposure to smoke from the fire would be dangerous it was not seen as an immediate health threat to area residents.

The cause of the blast at MBA Polymers Inc., a research and commercial recycling operation, was not immediately known.

The injured were treated for smoke inhalation, the fire officials said.

-- Carl Jenkins (, October 27, 2000

Moderation questions? read the FAQ