Death toll rises to six in Kansas grain elevator blast

Reuters News
Posted: Oct 31, 2011 5:19 PM
Death toll rises to six in Kansas grain elevator blast

KANSAS CITY, Mo (Reuters) - The death toll in a Kansas grain elevator explosion rose to six on Monday after the bodies of three people who were missing and presumed killed were recovered, a city official said.

A dozen workers were at the elevator site in Atchison, about 50 miles northwest of Kansas City, on Saturday night at the time of the explosion, which officials said occurred as some rail cars were being unloaded.

Three bodies were found by Sunday morning, but it took until Monday to find and recover the other victims, Atchison city manager Trey Cocking said. Two people are hospitalized.

An investigation into the cause of the explosion was continuing on Monday. The blast at the elevator, owned by Bartlett Grain Co, could be felt at least three miles away. Aerial footage from television helicopters showed mangled, smoldering structures on top of the elevator after the blast.

The Atchison elevator is along the Missouri River and a railroad line.

(Reporting by Kevin Murphy; Editing by David Bailey and Cynthia Johnston)