INDUSTRY – A chemical explosion at an pottery company Saturday left a worker hospitalized in critical condition,authorities said.
The explosion was reported at 1:17 p.m. at a business at Laguna Clay, 14400 Lomitas Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s and fire officials said.
A 36-year-old employee was cutting an old metal barrel with a torch when it exploded, apparently due to residue of an unknown flammable material that had been stored in it, sheriff’s Sgt. Tom Wilson said.
The badly burned man was hospitalized in critical condition, officials said.
Sheriff’s officials had previously reported that two employees had been injured, but later said that only one employee was hurt.
A hazardous material crew was unable to identify what the substance in the barrel was, but determined it was non-toxic, Wilson said.