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Three dead, three missing after Kansas grain elevator blast

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 30, 2011 9:28 AM
Three dead, three missing after Kansas grain elevator blast

ATCHISON, Kan (Reuters) - Three people were dead and three missing after a grain elevator explosion, an Atchison, Kansas, Fire Department official said on Sunday.

The official, who did not want his name to be used, declined to give other details, but an earlier statement on the city's website described the 7 p.m. Saturday incident as "a large-scale explosion" at the Bartlett Grain elevator in Atchison.

"The percussion of the explosion could be felt at least three miles away," it said, adding that there was no threat to public safety.

Police and fire units from Atchison and nearby areas went to the scene to help in control and rescue efforts.

The statement said stored grain can generate toxic gases and milled grain can be explosive under certain conditions. Rescue operations can be difficult because workers are often scattered throughout the facility, making them hard to find.

(Reporting by Jerry Norton; Editing by Barbara Goldberg)