By Kyle Presley, Managing Editor
The Chatsworth Fire Dept. quickly responded to an apparent explosion Friday evening at Cimbar Performance Minerals on Old Federal Rd., according to reports.
“We were sitting in the living room and I was walking down the stairs going to the garage and it just felt like an earthquake,” said Gladys Credelle, who lives less than a half mile from the Cimbar facility.
“The kids were screaming, cats running around- so you know something was wrong.”
A 911 caller reported hearing a, “very loud boom and felt the shockwave,” according to a CFD incident report.
According to Chatsworth Fire Chief Michael Baxter, CFD saw that there was a ruptured vessel, and lots of dust after arriving on the scene.
“It was probably a pretty significant overpressure wave, but the building is still standing and there were no injuries,” said Baxter.
The report noted that on July 26 at 8:14 P.M., CFD responded to a possible explosion and was joined in their response by Murray County Fire Dept. According to the incident report, Units were advised by dispatch to cancel the response at one point as they had been advised by a supervisor that there had been an explosion at Cimbar but that everything was ok.
The report states that CFD units continued their response and upon arrival made contact with a plant supervisor and that CFD personnel were advised by the supervisor that all plant personnel were accounted for and that there were no injuries.
According to Chuck Richards, Director of Operations at Cimbar, the incident is under investigation and some equipment and ductwork were damaged.
“We believe a pilot valve stuck open on an igniter,” said Richards.
The CFD incident report states that after a brief discussion with Cimbar personnel it was determined that there had been some maintenance issues with the gas burner and there was some significant damage to the machinery, ductwork and the building wall coverings where the gas dryer is located. There was no evidence of any fire or fire damage. The damage appeared to be caused by the overpressure within the vessel where the gas burner is located.
According to the report, Murray EMS was requested to evaluate one employee who had been present in the area of the explosion. It said that the employee had no obvious injuries and advised Murray EMS that he did not wish to be treated. The patient signed a refusal of treatment for Murray EMS.