Grain Still Smolders at Indiana Elevator After Blast

June 28, 2013

Grain fires are smoldering in silos at a northwestern Indiana grain elevator two days after an explosion killed a worker.

Safety manager Shawn Lambert of facility owner Co-Alliance LLP said Wednesday that firefighters working from 100 feet up were preparing to douse smoldering grain in at least two silos with water. It’s unclear how long it will take to completely extinguish all of the hot spots.

Lambert says work to remove equipment damaged in Monday’s explosion at the Union Mills Co-op allowed fresh air to ignite the grain Tuesday night and burn a rubber belt on a conveyer system.

Grain dust is the suspected cause of Monday’s blast that killed 67-year-old worker James Swank at the co-op about 30 miles southwest of South Bend.

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