Washington, DC, June 9, 2009— The U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) today sent an investigation team to the site of an explosion, fire and roof collapse at the ConAgra Foods plant in Garner, North Carolina.
According to media reports, at least 20 people have been transported to area hospitals and at least two remain unaccounted for following the explosion which occurred shortly before 11:30 a.m. today. The explosion caused the roof to collapse on one side of the building, knocked down walls, and blew debris about the area.
The CSB team will be headed by Investigations Supervisor Don Holmstrom. Board Member William Wark will accompany the team.
The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. The agency's board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.
The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to plants, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov
For more information, contact Public Affairs Specialist Hillary Cohen (on location) cell 202.446.8094; or Director of Public Affairs Dr. Daniel Horowitz, 202-261-7613, cell 202-441-6074.