Police: Fatal eastern Pennsylvania plant explosion appears accidental, cause still sought


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MORGANTOWN, Pennsylvania — State police say an explosion at an eastern Pennsylvania manufacturing plant that killed a worker over the weekend appears to have been accidental, but the exact cause is still being sought.

Emergency crews in Berks County were called to the Timet titanium plant in Caernarvon Township just before 11 p.m. Friday. Officials said 27-year-old Jacob Lopez of Ephrata was pronounced dead shortly before 12:30 a.m. Saturday.

Police at the Reading barracks said Monday that a five- or six-foot-tall boiler that was 20 to 25 feet in diameter exploded while using titanium for production, injuring several other people and damaging the building.

Police said "the exact cause of the explosion and the reason for ignition" remain under investigation. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is also investigating.

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