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Explosion injures six; Armorock had past OSHA violations

Six people were injured, sending two to the hospital, Monday morning, July 11 following an explosion at Armorock Polymer Concrete, which has been cited for safety violations in the past.

The explosion occurred around 9:30 a.m. at the commercial manufacturing facility at 14555 S. U.S. Highway 95, about 10 minutes from downtown Boulder City.

“It’s pretty severe. All the walls are blown out. All the windows are blown out. Even on the opposite side where the administration section is, the ceiling is down. It was a pretty massive explosion,” said Boulder City Deputy Fire Chief Greg Chesser.

The two people who were sent to the hospital were within the blast area of the explosion and suffered significant burns. The others had minor injuries and were treated on the scene.

“Everybody else was really minor, and they weren’t even transported. We only transported two and we had one heat-related (incident),” said Chesser.

The building was evacuated and a small fire that resulted from the explosion was put out. Police left the scene at 1:45 p.m.

Armorock manufactures polymer concrete, which is used to build things such as manhole covers and other structures used in sewers.

It is unknown what caused the explosion, but at the time of the event, work involving polymer was being done.

The chemicals used in the manufacturing process pose a risk for cancer and other deadly lung diseases to those in the area.

The Nevada Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued five serious violations to Armorock three months ago, with penalties totaling more than $12,000.

In May 2019, there was another accident where a worker lost his thumb after a steel plate fell, pinching his finger between the plate and the rim of a steel mold. The company was fined $3,150.

Armorock has not issued a statement or commented on Monday’s explosion. 

OSHA and the Clark County building inspector have opened an investigation on the subject and have monitored the building.

According to the city, the Clark County Building Department has yellow tagged the building to limit access to professionals for performing damage evaluation only. The main building was damaged but appears to be structurally sound.

Permits will need to be pulled in order to make repairs.

Contact reporter Owen Krepps at okrepps@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow him on Twitter @OKrepps85.

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