A 55-year-old man was killed and four other people were injured when an explosion occurred at Lake City Ammunition in Independence, MO on April 11. Lawrence Bass of Blue Springs was among a group of employees mixing compounds used for small-caliber ammunition when something triggered the explosion.
Emergency crews were called to the plant, about 20 minutes from Kansas City, at about 1 p.m. The force of the blast blew a wall of the primer mixing building and scattered debris across the ground. The injured employees were transported to a nearby hospital. Bass died at the scene.
This is not the first time a fatality or injury has been reported at Lake City which had been fined three times by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for workplace safety issues since 2008. The plant, which was established in 1940 and currently employs about 1,800 people, has been operated by Orbital ATK since 2000 and prior to that by ATK Armament Systems and Alliant Techsystems Inc.
Lake City’s troubled history includes:
- A 1990 explosion that killed an employee working with a primer mixture.
- A 2008 OSHA fine for workplace safety violations.
- A 2011 explosion that injured six people.
- A 2011 OSHA fine for workplace safety violations.
- A 2012 OSHA fine for workplace safety violations.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and OSHA are conducting investigations.
Attorneys Fred Pritzker and Eric Hageman have obtained several multi-million-dollar awards for families who have lost loved ones or clients who have been injured in explosions. To contact them for a free consultation click here. Or, call 1 (888) 377-8900. The call is free and there is no obligation.