An explosion at the Air Products & Chemicals, Inc. plant in Pueblo Monday afternoon sends a cloud of concentrated nitric acid into the air.
Investigators say it was an 800-gallon tank that exploded. It's unclear how much of the chemical was in the tank at the time. The company's 70+ employees were evacuated safely. A few people were treated for minor injuries and one person was taken to the hospital for additional treatment.
The affected area is bordered by Baxter Road on the east, the Arkansas River on the south and the E. 4th Street/Highway 47 interchange to the west.
Several schools in the immediate area held students until their parents could come and get them. And because of its proximity to the plant, Baxter Daycare students were taken to the Pueblo County High School gym.
This chemical plant is located in the Pueblo Airport Industrial Park, just south of the airport. Just last summer, the facility was sold by Ashland Chemical to Air Products.
Just before 5 p.m., Highway 50 reopened to traffic.
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