Four Injured In Explosion, Fire At Turano Bakery Lot In Oak Park
By John Dodge
CHICAGO (CBS) -- A fire at the Turano Bakery garage set off a series of explosions, creating a massive, three-alarm fire that injured four people and spread to nearby buildings.
According to preliminary reports from the Oak Park Fire Department, several Turano Bakery employees were attempting to change a propane tank in the garage area of their parking lot.
An accident occurred while they were performing the tank change causing an explosion and fire. The structure contained additional propane tanks and some gasoline which caused the fire to spread.
One person was sent to Loyola University Medical Center for treatment of severe burns. Three people were transported to Oak Park Hospital, and were treated for lacerations and released.
The explosion, which was reported around 2:15 p.m. caused a partial collapse of the structure.
Delivery trucks in the parking lot were engulfed in flames, according to witnesses. The bakery itself is located across the street and was not damaged.
As of 8:55 p.m., fire crews were still on the scene putting out hot sports, according to the Oak Park Fire Department.
The bakery garage is located at 6520 Roosevelt Road on the Oak Park side of Roosevelt. The bakery, which was evacuated, is located across the street in Berwyn. It took firefighters about an hour to get the blaze under control.
The entire immediate vicinity was evacuated, including homes and adjacent businesses
"All of a sudden there was a tremendous explosion, windows rattled, we felt the force of it. I came outside, I turned the corner, and there was black smoke the entire length of this street and probably another 500 feet in the air," said Kate Fitzgerald, the owner of nearby Fitzgerald's bar.
Malik Wornum, a witness from a Salvation Army building nearby, said some employees were injured and that the garage was engulfed in flames.
Wornum also said some homes nearby were on fire.
ComEd shut off electricity to about 900 homes in Oak Park and 1000 homes in Berwyn near the factory.
The Turano Bakery Co. is a family business that has baked a variety of artisan breads and other products for more than 50 years.
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