Furnace Explosion Leaves At Least Ten People Needing Medical Treatment

Reported by: James Mahon

Contributor: Ashley Henderson
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Updated: 10/25/2013 6:41 pm
CHATTANOOOGA, TN, (WDEF)-Three Designed Alloy workers were rushed to hospital, one with serious but non life threatening burns. 7 more arrived at an Erlanger walk-in clinic just a few hours ago.

When Chattanooga Fire Fighters arrived they found themselves battling a blaze where using water was not an option.

Bruce Garner, Chattanooga Fire Dept,"temperatures in that furnace reached 3000 degrees to melt the metal, stainless steel to put water on the furnace at that time would have at the very least caused a steam explosion if not maybe the entire furnace might have ruptured"

The explosion happened around 7.20 am and fire teams were on scene in a matter of minutes liaising with workers on how best to contain the flames.

Bruce Garner, Chattanooga Fire Dept,"They use portable fire extinguishers with dry powder to fight the fire around the furnace and then they used hand held hose lines to put the fire out around the furnace and the building where other fires had started"

Designed alloys confirmed that they are shut down for business for the rest of the day and its been an incredibly traumatic time for them

While staff on site were unable to comment Chicago based Company President Mike Schroeder told News 12 their staff are trained to deal with these situations.

Mike Schroeder,Company President, "we have safety controls in place and they did work, the situation was contained, the smoke and things like that can at times can  cause a bigger episode than really what sometimes can occur"

The business will be fully open on Monday.
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