Five injured in explosion reported near Herscher

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2011 5:30 a.m.CDT

HERSCHER – An explosion during a welding job injured five people Tuesday at a gas pipeline company’s plant in northeastern Illinois, company officials said.

Police received a call about an explosion at Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America in Herscher about 10 a.m.

Kinder Morgan owns the company, and spokesman Joe Hollier said the flash fire was extinguished immediately and is under investigation.

Herscher is a community with less than 2,000 people about 60 miles southwest of Chicago. The plant is located on a county road away from the community’s business district.

The explosion occurred while crews performed routine maintenance in the main compressor building, said Kankakee County Sheriff’s Office chief deputy Ken McCabe. He also said the fire was quickly extinguished.

“They were conducting some maintenance,” McCabe said.

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