Man killed in 2nd plant explosion in Ascension Parish
DONALDSONVILLE - One person was killed in a second explosion in as many days at a chemical plant in Ascension Parish.
State Police said Ronald "Rocky" Morris, 55, of Belle Rose, was killed in the blast at CF Industries in Donaldsonville. Seven other were injured and taken to hospitals to be treated for their injuries.
The accident occurred in a section of the plant that had been shut down for maintenance activity.
Officials with CF Industries said the incident involved the rupture of an inert nitrogen vessel during the off-loading of nitrogen. There was no fire or chemical release nor is there any threat or hazard posed to the community.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected and their families," said Lou Frey, Vice President and General Manager of the Donaldsonville Nitrogen Complex. "Our focus is on our number one priority - the health and safety of our employees and the community. We are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our employees."
The CF Industries plant in Donaldsonville is the largest producer of nitrogen in the nation, according to the company's website. In 2000 OSHA levied a six-figure fine against the company after an explosion in an ammonia unit there killed three workers and injured eight.