Five dead after ‘gas leak’ explosion ripped through Pennsylvania chocolate factory, with eight people hospitalized and six people still missing as hell rages on
- Five are dead after a suspected gas leak caused an explosion at the RM Palmer Company in West Reading on Friday.
- Six are still missing while eight people have been hospitalized for their injuries.
- Authorities have not determined the cause of the explosion, but Garry Witmoyer of Wyomissing said it sounded like a gas explosion.
Five people have died after a ‘gas leak’ ignited a chocolate factory explosion in Pennsylvania, hospitalizing eight and leaving six still missing as the inferno continues.
The RM Palmer business in West Reading caught fire last night following a terrifying explosion caused by a suspected gas leak.
Authorities have not determined the cause of the explosion, but Garry Witmoyer of Wyomissing said it sounded like a gas explosion.
‘I didn’t know, I just ran outside and saw that mess over there. I think it was a gas explosion from the way it sounded,” he said. alphabet 6. “It was very scary, the building was filled with smoke just from the explosion.”
His son said, “At first I didn’t see any flames, just a bunch of shingles and materials falling from the sky.” He knew it was an explosion.
No one was evacuated before the explosion, which has left firefighters battling the flames. The RM Palmer #2 building has been completely destroyed and the #1 building has sustained some damage.
RM Palmer Company in West Reading caught fire last night following a terrifying explosion following a suspected gas leak. Authorities have not determined the cause of the explosion, but Garry Witmoyer of Wyomissing said it sounded like a gas explosion.
Firefighters are still battling the blaze where six are still missing, eight have been hospitalized and five have died.
The explosion took place just before 5 p.m. and everyone within a block radius was asked to stay away from the area while emergency efforts were made. Authorities have said there is no immediate danger to the community.
Nearby resident Kristen Wisniewski said it was “the loudest thing I’ve ever heard in my life.”
“It literally felt like the ground fell out from under you. The whole house shook and my dogs froze, they couldn’t move, it was scary,” she told ABC 6.
Mayor Samantha Kaag, who is also a firefighter, was on the scene within minutes of the fire.
Kaag said the blast was so powerful it moved an apartment building “forward four feet.”
Large columns of smoke rise from the destroyed factory. No one was evacuated before the explosion and police are still investigating.
The explosion took place just before 5 p.m. and everyone within a block radius was asked to stay away from the area while emergency efforts were made.
Dean Murray, the West Reading Borough town manager, said some residents were displaced from the damaged apartment building.
“It’s pretty level, unfortunately there’s not much that can be salvaged,” he said of the explosion.
The explosion was caught on camera. Video footage saw a column of thick black smoke in the air.
The cause of the explosion in the community about 60 miles northwest of Philadelphia was under investigation, Holden told reporters.
The explosion destroyed a building and damaged a neighboring building that included apartments.
Smoke rises from an explosion at the RM Palmer Copamy plant in West Reading, Pennsylvania.
Eight people were taken to Reading Hospital on Friday night, Tower Health spokeswoman Jessica Bezler said.
Two people were admitted in good condition and five were being treated and would be released, he said in an email.
One patient was transferred to another facility, but Bezler did not provide further details.
Kagg said township officials were not in immediate contact with officials at RM Palmer, who Murray described as “a township staple.”
The company’s website says it has been making “chocolate novelties” since 1948 and now has 850 employees at its West Reading headquarters.