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Officials: Braddock's Edgar Thomson Steel Works Safely Evacuated After Explosions, Fire

BRADDOCK (KDKA) -- Officials at Edgar Thomson Steel Works in Braddock are investigating after a pair of explosions and a fire Monday evening in an industrial building at the facility.

According to plant officials, the incident happened around 7:30 p.m. in the steelmaking area of the sprawling complex, located in the 1300-block of Braddock Avenue.

It is not clear what caused the fire, but officials are investigating.

Fire officials at the scene said there were two explosions at the building.

Photo: Joel Matlak

The plant has its own in-house fire crews, but security called for outside assistance from Braddock, nearby Rankin and the Forest Hills fire departments.

Officials with the plant say everyone was safely evacuated and has been accounted for. No injuries were reported.

KDKA-TV's Ralph Iannotti talked to several people who live in the area. They said the explosions rattled both the neighborhood and their nerves.

"I was sitting on my porch, and then, just sitting there and then boom! It sounded like a cannon," neighbor Gerry Chambers said. "Then, I heard another explosion a couple of minutes later."

Another neighbor, Sanford Barnes, said, "I didn't know what it was, but it was loud. I didn't hear anything like that since I was in the Gulf, so it scared me. I heard the second explosion, then it was like, okay, this is crazy."

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This is the full statement Edgar Thomson Steel Works' officials released Monday night:

At approximately 7:30 p.m., an incident occurred in the steelmaking area of the Edgar Thomson Plant. Everyone in the area was able to safely evacuate and has been accounted for. We have begun an investigation to determine the root cause. No further details are available at this time.

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