Utility Workers Burned in Plant Blast

Friday, July 14, 2017 @ 04:07 PM gHale

Two Danville Utilities workers suffered injuries Monday after an explosion outside the Intertape Polymer Group plant on Eagle Springs Road in Pittsylvania County, VA.

The explosion occurred around 11 a.m., said Jason Grey, the director of utilities.

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Grey said Charles Sutton and David Ward, the two workers, suffered burns, but he didn’t know the extent of the burns.

Sutton was flown to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and Ward was taken to UNC Medical Center in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Sutton has since been released from the hospital.

Sutton and Ward were working on the wiring for future needs at the plant when the explosion happened, officials said.

Intertape Operations Manager Mike Jones said the work performed by utilities workers was related to an expansion at the plant. Intertape, which manufactures carton-sealing tape and stretch film, is installing new equipment, he said.

Grey said they don’t know what caused the explosion yet.

“We will work with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and other authorities to determine the cause,” Grey said.

The Ringgold Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department responded to the incident.

Last week, Danville Utilities worker, Samuel Thompson, 63, died after he was electrocuted while working on a power line on Applewood Drive in Pittsylvania County; Grey said Thompson was inside the elevated bucket truck when the accident occurred.

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