Amsted Rail explosion: Cause of blast revealed

8:21 PM, Mar 8, 2013   |    comments
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By Art Holliday

GRANITE CITY, Ill. (KSDK) - Investigators say a gas fire caused an explosion at a Granite City rail yard Thursday that injured nine workers.

Two men remain hospitalized, while some of Amsted Rail's other employees are complaining about how the company's reacting to the situation.

NewsChannel 5 spoke to an Amsted Rail employee who said he and some coworkers were forced to keep working, even though they were upset about the explosion and their injured colleagues.

The explosion sent two men to Mercy Medical Center. One of the men, Danny Wilson, is listed in critical condition. The family of the second worker, Reggie Golliday, asked that his condition not be released.

The wife of an Amsted Rail employee contacted NewsChannel 5 and said as many as 20 of the injured men's coworkers, including her husband, were distraught after the explosion. They wanted to stop working following the explosion, but were told by their supervisor to continue working.

"It's appalling. I can't believe they would do that to their company men after people they worked with just got injured," said the worker's spouse, who asked that we not identify her. "They have no compassion for them, to, you know, to take a minute and grieve about it or whatever they may need to do."

NewsChannel 5 talked by phone with Wayne Luce, a spokesman for Amsted Rail. Luce said he could not comment specifically on whether employees were forced to continue working after the explosion because he was not aware of the allegation until NewsChannel 5 asked him about it.

Luce said Amsted has a culture of taking care of its employees and tries to be as supportive as possible. He said crisis counselors were on hand Thursday and Friday for employees.



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