Trojan Corp. is still tight-lipped with details on a small explosion Friday morning that injured one man.
The explosives company called a Utah County sheriff's dispatcher to request an ambulance at 9:20 a.m. The dispatcher described the explosion as "small, very minor" but had no further details. She said her department was not asked to investigate the explosion; Trojan officials will handle that.The ambulance took employee Junior Underwood, 62, Salem, to Mountain View Hospital, in Payson, but he was later transferred to Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo. He underwent surgery Friday afternoon to reconnect nerves and blood vessels in fingers on his right hand. One finger was amputated, and he was in serious but stable condition Friday night. Underwood's eardrums were burst by vibrations from the explosion, and his left ear required surgical repair.
"There will probably be some permanent loss of hearing," Clark Caras, hospital spokesman, said. "He was in really good spirits when they brought him in. He told the doctors just to fix his hand up enough so that he could still go fishing."
A Trojan spokeswoman said the company had "no comment at this time" on the circumstances surrounding the accident, and she does not anticipate releasing information in the next day or two.
The blast is the second accidental explosion in 10 weeks for the Spanish Fork company. A blast on Feb. 15 woke residents 10 miles away. That explosion obliterated a building and carved an 80-foot-wide, 3-foot-deep crater where it had stood. Seven workers were treated for injuries and released later the same day. The men had been returning from a break and were about to enter the building that exploded.
Trojan Corp. also was involved in an accident in April 1987 when a pipe the company produced exploded in an area salvage yard. One man was killed and a second was critically injured but survived.
Bernell Banks, owner of a convenience store, a cafe and a restaurant about a mile west of Trojan, said he did not hear the Friday explosion, "so it must not have been very large." Vibrations from the blast in February broke several windows in his businesses and damaged a door frame.
Although there was no damage to his business from Friday's accident, Banks said working so close to the explosives plant makes him nervous.
"It's a worry, you get a little jumpy. I've thought a lot about moving away, but it would be pretty hard to sell three businesses at once."
Banks expressed concern that the company had not released information on the February accident.
"They won't tell you anything," Banks said. "Either they just don't know, or they're not telling."
A Trojan spokeswoman said Friday that the February accident was still under investigation and the company had no comment on the cause.