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Greenville plant in Michigan severely damaged after explosion

Emergency personnel responded to an explosion late on March 17 at a Dicastal North America plant in Greenville, roughly 30 miles northeast of Grand Rapids.

According to the company’s website, it produces lightweight aluminum alloy wheels. However, at this point, it is unclear what effect the disruption will have on the automakers such as Ford, General Motors, Stellantis, Toyota, Honda, and Nissan as they’re clients of the Dicastal facility.  

According to GM spokesman Dan Flores, “We are working with Dicastal to assess any potential effects on our operations while being aware of the problem with their facilities. According to Ford spokesman Said Deep, “the automaker has confirmed no disruption from the fire.” Whereas, Stellantis is investigating the situation, according to spokeswoman Jodi Tinson.

Sgt. Steve DeWitt of the Greenville Department of Public Safety said in a video tweeted around midnight on Friday by WOOD-TV reporter Amanda Porter, “The structure had literally exploded, spewing rubble outside its outside walls. You can look around and see what appears to be debris that was inside but was actually blasted outside from the plant site,”  

Adding, “At this moment, every worker has been located.” However, according to a source, one employee did have fairly serious injuries and was taken to a hospital in the Grand Rapids region by EMS” DeWitt declared. 

One difficulty we face with this kind of fire is that liquid metal cannot be extinguished with water, DeWitt said. “Water,  aluminum, and magnesium react violently. Hence, it differs from typical firefighting. It won’t go out if you simply pour water on it. So, we must either employ dry chemicals or eliminate the oxygen from the fire.”

Firefighters must move closer to the flames when a fire is at the ceiling, according to DeWitt, in order to apply the chemicals.

According to DeWitt, the northeast corner of the plant sustained a considerable amount of damage.

“Their plant safety officer here is on scene. He has been of great assistance. He is the person who knows the plant the best. He has been evaluating the damage alongside us. He’s also familiar with the tools,” DeWitt said.

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Jaelyn Campbell
Jaelyn Campbell
Jaelyn Campbell is a staff writer/reporter for CBT News. She is a recent honors cum laude graduate with a BFA in Mass Media from Valdosta State University. Jaelyn is an enthusiastic creator with more than four years of experience in corporate communications, editing, broadcasting, and writing. Her articles in The Spectator, her hometown newspaper, changed how people perceive virtual reality. She connects her readers to the facts while providing them a voice to understand the challenges of being an entrepreneur in the digital world.

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