CHICAGO — An explosion at a South Side water treatment facility seriously injured ten people. The blast happened Thursday, August 30, 2018. Rubble buried two of the ten victims according to wgntv.com. Fortunately, none of the injuries were considered life-threading, andnone of the victims had to have limbs amputated. Notwithstanding, this was a traumatic event for all involved.*
The explosion happened at the Calumet Water Reclamation Plant located at 400 E. 130th Street. Authorities preliminarily believe that methane gas built up in the sludge treatment plant. The sludge treatment plant is the location of the facility in which the raw sewerage enters for treatment.
The explosion was so powerful that the blast tore the roof down, which subsequently fell inward and injured the workers. Eight workers managed to get out of the facility without assistance despite their injuries. Another two became trapped in the rubble. Firefightersand emergency responders managed to free the first of the trapped workers within twenty minutes of their arrival.
Rescuers had to fight long and hard to free the other worker. A fire commissioner told the media that the other person trapped under the collapsed roof was “entombed” in the rubble. By all accounts, the man was lucky to survive. Upwards of seventy rescuers dug for over two hours and went six feet down and forty feet across to locate the man. A large concrete beam fell on a leg and pinned him down. That leg was broken. The man also suffered a broken jaw.
Once freed, rescuers flew him to a local trauma center for treatment. He remained hospitalized. All of the other nine injured workers also went to area hospitals for treatment and evaluation.
Despite the explosion and damage to the treatment facility, the plant remains operational. Authorities are continuing their investigation and say that there is absolutely no threat to public safety as a result of this freak occurrence.
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