Freeport Journal-Standard, Freeport, Illinois - 23 February 1971

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Freeport Journal-Standard, Freeport, Illinois - 23 February 1971 - Explosion, Fire Injure 3 Men An explosion and...
Explosion, Fire Injure 3 Men An explosion and fire at the Freeport Blacktop Construction Co. shop and receiving building on U.S. 20 East at about 9:45 this morning destroyed parts stored in the building and injured three workers. One of the three, Norman Untersee, 620 W. Elk St., is reported in serious condition in the intensive care unit at Freeport Memorial Hospital. He is suffering from second and third degree burns to most of his body, a hospital spokesman said. Earl Sigafus, Freeport Route 1, is listed in satisfactory condition at the hospital with second and third degree burns to his face, neck, chest and upper extremities. Gordon Garnhart, Pearl City, is also listed in satisfactory condition. He has second degree burns to his face and right hand. Drum Explodes A 50-gallon drum containing methanol antifreeze exploded, but what touched off the explosion was not known. The lid of the drum was blown through the roof of the metal building. Warren DeVnes, general superintendent at Blacktop, said there were no torches lighted in the building. One man was grinding, and sparks from his work may have ignited fumes from the methanol, DeVries speculated. There were others in the area where the blast occurred, but none of them was injured. DeVries said that he had just walked past the methanol when it exploded and he was thrown 3 or 4 feet. Fire damage was extensive although no dollar estimate was immediately made. Move Large Backhoe There were five pieces of heavy equipment in the building when the blast came. Firemen moved one, a large backhoe, out from the smoke - filled enclosure before they could enter to put cut the fire. The Freeport Rural Fire Department answered the alarm with all seven pieces of its equipment and at least 20 men, Chief Robert Keeler said. The Freeport Fire Department sent one engine. The fire was controlled quickly. City firemen returned to the station at 10:40, and rural firemen remained at the scene applying water on occasional flare- ups and working with Blacktop employes cleaning up. Weather Forecast NORTHERN ILLINOIS — Clearing tonight and colder with low 15 to 20. Wednesday partly sunny with the high low to mid 30s. Sunrise 6:42 a.m. Sunset, 5:39 p.m. Unofficial temperature at 1 p.m., 30 degrees. heavy move thwart South

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  1. Freeport Journal-Standard,
  2. 23 Feb 1971, Tue,
  3. Page 1

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  • Freeport Journal-Standard, Freeport, Illinois - 23 February 1971

    marshfox23 – 26 Mar 2013