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Three injured in fire and explosion at wood pellet mill in northern B.C.

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October 09, 2014 - 12:15 PM

BURNS LAKE, B.C. - Three mill workers have been injured in a fire and explosion at a wood pellet plant in northern B.C.

Leroy Reitsma, the president of Pinnacle Renewable Energy, says the incident happened during a maintenance shutdown at a facility near Burns Lake.

Reitsma says one worker suffered serious injuries and two workers received minor injuries, though he couldn't offer more details on the nature of the injuries.

Reitsma says the company is now working to determine the cause of the fire and explosion, which he says originated inside a drying machine that wasn't operating at the time.

The wood mill industry has been under increased scrutiny since two fatal explosions at facilities in Burns Lake and Prince George, both of which were linked to the presence of combustible wood dust.

Reitsma says it's far too early to speculate about what happened at the Pinnacle plant, though he says the fact that it occurred inside a piece of equipment makes the accident different from previous explosions related to wood dust.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2014
The Canadian Press

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