Two people are dead and another injured after a mortar exploded inside an Illinois recycling plant that deals with military items like ammunition casings.
The explosion occurred at Totall Metal Recycling in Granite City, Illinois, at approximately 6:25 a.m. on Aug. 25, 2014.
“This corporation recycles everything you can think of, from plastics to cardboard to metals, and some of their contracts involve getting materials from the military,” Police Chief Rich Miller told reporters at the scene, as bomb technicians combed the facility.
The company, which employs 160 people, didn’t speculate about the incident, nor address whether a live mortar had ever previously entered the facility. Totall Metal, however, did release a statement that addressed the loss of life.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families as we collectively cope with this tragedy," the statement said. “We are committed to providing each employee and his or her family with counseling resources during this difficult time.”
The victims have yet to be identified.