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At least 8 injured in Chicago plant explosion
At least eight people were injured Thursday when an explosion caused a section of roof to collapse at a Chicago water reclamation plant, trapping some of the injured people inside, authorities said. Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Merritt told the Chicago Tribune that eight people had been taken to area hospitals and were in serious-to-critical condition. At least two of the injured had been reported trapped when the roof of the one-story brick building on the city’s far South Side collapsed shortly before 11 a.m. It was unclear Thursday afternoon whether anyone was still trapped. Firefighters were seen rescuing one person shortly after the collapse, and the Fire Department later asked television stations to keep their helicopters away from the scene because the noise was making it difficult for firefighters to hear whether anyone was still inside. The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District said in a statement that the explosion occurred in the sludge concentration building. The cause of the explosion wasn’t yet known. Gina Ruiz said she received a phone message from her husband, who had been working inside the plant, saying there had been an explosion and that his co-workers were trapped inside. She said he told her the explosion “blew the roof off and (it) came back down” and that “there were a lot of guys trapped inside.” Her husband was hit by falling pieces of the roof but not seriously injured, she said.