A large explosion occurred at the I Schumann & Co. metal and paint plant in Bedford, Ohio on Monday shortly after 2 pm, adding to a recent string of disasters that have released harmful chemicals into the surrounding environments.

Just two weeks after a freight train carrying hazardous chemicals derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, releasing hazardous toxins into the surrounding area, a metal and paint factory about an hour away from East Palestine exploded and released more toxic chemicals into the air.

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The Oakwood Village Fire Department reported that this incident caused 13 people to be taken to the hospital, at least one of whom is in critical condition. Fire Captain Brian DiRocco reported that there were multiple burn victims at the scene of the explosion, and at least one person was pulled from the rubble before being rushed to a nearby hospital.

The explosion caused one side of the factory to completely blow out, causing bricks from the wall to smash into nearby cars and businesses. Debris was seen dispersed hundreds of yards away from the factory, and some nearby cars reportedly caught on fire after being hit by debris.

One of the buildings struck by the debris houses a company called Rose Colored Gaming, whose employees reported that debris struck the roof of their building and damaged cars in their parking lot. One employee commented that it “looks like a volcano erupted.”

The smoke cloud from the explosion could be seen for miles around the explosion site, and the Broadview Heights Fire Department has received reports of “burning oil” in the air.

It is currently unclear what caused the explosion, but it is fueling the concerns of American citizens as it is the latest in a string of recent disasters that have released toxic chemicals into the environment.

 

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