Granite City, IL, United States (4E) – Two workers of a recycling plant in Granite City were killed and another worker was injured when a mortar exploded at the facility on Monday.
Granite City Police Chief Rich Miller said the 6:30 a.m. explosion in an outdoor part of the Total Metal Recycling (TMR) plant on Missouri Avenue was an accident and not homicide as the facility recycles military materials.
Miller also said there was no danger to the general area.
The bodies of the deceased were taken to the Madison County morgue while the injured was taken to a St. Louis hospital.
Police did not identify the victims and the condition of the injured. But TMR maintenance worker Miguel Romo, 41, of Fairmont City, claimed his brother, Rodolfo, 46, was killed in the blast.
Former TMR worker Ryan Cerentano, 29, of Affton, said his brother, Tyler Muenstermann, 24, of Edwardville, was killed in the explosion.
Cerentano claimed it is not safe to work in the TMR plant because many items there are dangerous.
The Scott Air Force Base sent an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit truck to the scene. The St. Louis city police police bomb squad also responded while agents of the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives arrived to investigate. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), which cited the plant for violations in 2011 and 2012, sent an investigator to the scene.
Relatives of workers at the plant also arrived at the TMR gate but police prevented them from entering.