Chemical explosion at Illinois manufacturing plant leaves 1 dead, 1 hurt

A chemical explosion at a Kane County manufacturing plant killed one person and left another critically injured, authorities said.

The explosion occurred about 10:45 a.m. at W.R. Meadows Construction Products, 300 Industrial Drive in Hampshire, according to Village Manager Jay Hedges. Hampshire is 47 miles northwest of Chicago.

Hampshire Fire Protection District Chief Trevor Herrmann told the Chicago Tribune two employees were cleaning a tank inside one of the buildings when the explosion occurred. It wasn’t immediately known what type of chemicals were involved or what might have triggered the accident, Herrmann said.


W.R. Meadows manufactures asphalt and concrete products for building construction, he said.

The person killed has not been identified pending notification of family members by the Kane County Coroner’s Office. The injury victim was taken to an Elgin hospital.

All employees have been accounted for and there were no other injuries, officials said.

The explosion caused significant property damage to the materials production facility where it occurred, Hampshire Village Manager Jay Hedges said.

People living and working near the site were evacuated for safety reasons, and a village inspector went to the site to determine the building’s structural integrity, Hedges said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.