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OSHA investigating explosions at ADM plants

Two different explosions, one resulting in a death, have OSHA looking into ADM.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA and a book.
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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is looking into the two different incidents that occurred at Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) corn processing plants in Clinton, Iowa, and Decatur, Illinois, last weekend within 24 hours of one another.

WQAD 8 reported that OSHA has confirmed a launch of two separate investigations into each explosion. OSHA area director in Peoria, Illinois, Barry Salerno, confirmed an inspection of the facility in Decatur has been initiated, the report said.

It also stated that “Iowa Labor Commissioner Michael Mauro said an OSHA investigation has begun at the Clinton plant as well. He said he would be contacting federal officials about cooperation with the Illinois area office.”

Illinois plant

A conveyor belt system exploded in the Decatur incident. The plant blast was reported at about 8 p.m. and caused no injuries, ADM spokesperson Jackie Anderson told the Decatur Herald and Review.

Iowa plant

One Eastern Iowa firefighter was killed and another was seriously injured when an explosion occurred at the Clinton, Iowa, ADM plant.

“Clinton Fire Chief Mike Brown said the initial fire call came in around 5:45 a.m. Saturday," according to a report from the Clinton Herald. "ADM employees had discovered smoldering material in one of the silo storage bins at the loading facility. Anderson said the employees immediately contacted the Clinton Fire Department."

The two firefighters involved in the explosion were more than 100 feet off the ground when the incident occurred.

Anderson said in a statement Saturday that employees discovered smoldering material in one of the loading facility’s silo storage bins. Anderson said ADM is assessing the damage to its facility. The investigation is still underway.

Previous incidents

This is not the first incident at either of the two plants. Last November, emergency personnel were called to the Decatur facility for a dust explosion and fire in a grain elevator, Powder & Bulk Solids reported.

“In May of last year, a worker at the ADM plant in Clinton was severely injured when part of a boom truck came into contact with a high-voltage power line there. The last fatal accident at the facility occurred in July of 2016, when a man was killed at the company's railroad switchyard,” WQAD 8 reported.

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