Derry plant closes after an explosion damages roof

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Operations of specialty alloys at a Westmoreland County plant will be on hiatus this week while crews make repairs after an explosion Wednesday night left a 60-foot hole in the building's roof.

No one was injured at the ATI Allegheny Ludlum plant in Derry Township where township and Latrobe fire companies responded around 9:10 p.m., according to a Westmoreland County emergency dispatcher.

ATI spokesman Daniel Greenfield said the blast occurred when scrap metal with moisture on it -- possibly from recent rain -- was being loaded into the furnace.

This reaction happens more often in the winter when ice forms on scrap metal, he said, and crews are careful to check for moisture that may pool in the scrap.

No equipment was damaged, Mr. Greenfield added, and the roof is expected to be fixed this week. The company is checking for further damage, and the investigation is ongoing.

mobilehome - breaking - neigh_westmoreland

Molly Born: mborn@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1944 or on Twitter @borntolede. First Published July 24, 2013 11:00 PM


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