A propane-related explosion at the Agri Star Meat & Poultry complex in Postville, Iowa, caused injuries to two people and portions of a building to collapse.
According to a report from COLLIVE, the explosion happened around 3 p.m. February 15 after a hose on a 100-pound propane tank was broken. The tank had been damaged by a forklift before the explosion occurred. Propane had filled the room, but there was no fire.
Two men were transported to an area hospital, with one of the patients suffering burns to the face, and the other experiencing leg and chest pain.
Agri Star issued the following statement: “Agri-Star endured an unfortunate event, when a propane gas tank burst causing 2 of our team members to be sent for treatment/observation and we pray for their quick recovery. The incident occurred on the live dock which is adjacent to the processing building. We are delighted to report no other team members inside the facility were hurt. Our management team and nearby team members did a great job evacuating the area until proper clearance was given. Thank you to the Postville Ambulance, Fire Department and local authorities for promptly assisting.”
Parts of the south and west sides of the building collapsed in the explosion, according to reports.
According to a post on the Postville Fire Department (PFD) Facebook page, the Postville emergency agencies received assistance from the Allamakee County Sheriff’s Office, Iowa State Patrol, Allamakee County Emergency Management Agency and CP Railroad. The PFD also said it “would like to offer prayers for quick recovery for those involved.”
Agri Star Meat & Poultry ranks as the 30th largest poultry company in the United States. The kosher meat processing and packing company produced an estimated 270,000 pounds of ready-to-cook chicken on a weekly basis in 2020, according to the WATTPoultry.com Top Companies Database. The company employs about 325 people.