2 injured in explosion at industrial building in Minneapolis

September 19, 2018

An explosion and fire Wednesday afternoon at a metal fabrication plant in Minneapolis badly injured two workers, authorities said.

The blaze occurred at Metal-Matic, 629 2nd St. SE., across the Mississippi River from downtown.

The two employees were taken to a hospital with serious burns and other injuries, said Assistant Fire Chief Bryan Tyner.

Tyner said the blast and fire are believed to have occurred in a dust collector.

A photo from Minneapolis Scanner, a Facebook page that tracks police and fire transmissions, showed a substantial amount of smoke coming from the building. By about 3:45 p.m., the blaze appeared to be under control.

Dozens of employees were ordered out of the building and stood in the streets with their hard hats on.

I heard a loud banging noise that shook my entire apartment building, Drue McLean, who lives directly behind the building, told the Star Tribune. Shortly after, I saw clouds of smoke through my window. When I went outside, black smoke was coming out of the Metal-Matic building, and workers were gathering in the parking lot.

CenterPoint Energy shut off the natural gas flow to the building, said utility spokeswoman Becca Virden, who add that the incident is not natural gas related.

Founded in 1951, Metal-Matic produces tubing for various applications such as automotive, appliance and construction. It has two other locations, Bedford Park in suburban Chicago, and Middletown, north of Cincinnati.

Return to www.startribune.com for updates on this developing story.

Paul Walsh 612-673-4482

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