Two men burned in ATI explosion near Grantsville

Published: Tuesday, April 2 2013 6:21 p.m. MDT

GRANTSVILLE — Two men were treated for second-degree burns following an explosion at Allegheny Technologies Inc. on Tuesday.

The men, ages 53 and 38, were taken by medical helicopter from the metal manufacturing plant at 12633 N. Rowley Road to the University of Utah Burn Center. The plant is located about 30 miles northwest of Grantsville.

The explosion was reported just before 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Tooele County Emergency Management spokesman Wade Mathews said. 

The men sustained burns to their upper torsos, hands, arms and faces but they were reported to be in stable condition, Mathews said. Because the incident potentially involved chemicals, the two men were "decontaminated" by ATI emergency responders and Tooele County firefighters before being transported, following standard ATI procedure.

The younger man is reported to have pre-existing respiratory problems, raising concerns he may have breathed in some of the contaminants, said Bucky Whitehouse, a Tooele County Emergency Management employee.  

Three ambulances, including one stationed at ATI, responded to the emergency, Mathews said. Multiple agencies responded, including North Tooele County Fire Department, Mountain West Ambulance, Tooele County Sheriff's Office and Utah Highway Patrol. 

ATI works primarily with titanium at the Rowley plant. Large, industrial furnaces are part of the manufacturing process. The men were involved in "standard maintenance operations" when the explosion occurred, Mathews said. 

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration will investigate the explosion, he said.

McKenzie Romero

Twitter: McKenzieRomero

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