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Gerdau plant in Wilton has explosion- UPDATE

(KOLO)
Published: Sep. 21, 2017 at 4:26 AM CDT
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UPDATE: Gerdau Ameristell sent out a news release Thursday morning saying: Gerdau confirms it has temporarily suspended operations at its Wilton, Iowa plant due to an explosion that occurred late yesterday evening.

Three employees and one contractor were injured. They were immediately transported to local hospitals to receive care. Two employees have since been released.

Wilton residents recall the night they heard they heard the explosion.

"All of a sudden there was like a big boom trailer shook plants moved and everything, it sounded like two trucks colliding," Susan Milligan said.

"It gives you an eerie feeling, it's like a haunted house out there or something," said Wilton resident, Junior Kress.

The company is already working closely with the authorities to investigate the incident and determine its cause.

Gerdau’s priority is attending to the injured, their families and employees at the Iowa plant. The company has activated its Employee Assistance Program to offer its services to the injured employees, contractor and their families. No further details regarding the incident are available at this time.

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Emergency crews responded to the Gerdau Steel mill late Wednesday night.

Muscatine County dispatch confirms crews responded to a possible lightning strike. Wilton Police were also on the scene.

No one at the Gerdau Steel mill could answer questions overnight.

It is unclear if there were any injuries.

In 2016 the steel mill laid off 35 people, citing market conditions.

In June 2012, three people at the steel mill were hurt in an electrical fire.

The shredding operation at the Gerdau Steel mill in Wilton was restarted in mid-2012 after being idle for three years.