Pyrotechnics Building Explodes - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Pyrotechnics Building Explodes

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One person was badly burned after a building, where pyrotechnics are made, went up in smoke just between Acton and Billings.

At Evolution Pyrotechnics near Acton, and building which had been smoldering for about an hour, blew up into a huge cloud smoke. "I saw a huge plume of smoke crossing Highway 3 from the west side to the east side," witness George Page said.

George Page arrived on scene just before noon on Tuesday, after he received a phone call from his friend Larry Carpenter. Carpenter couldn't make it to the site, but he was concerned his property near the explosion was at risk. "Larry asked if I would drive out and see what was going on out here today," George Page said.

An pyrotechnics employee said he saw people running from the building where the chemicals were mixed. So, he followed ATF regulations and called 911. Firefighters responded from Billings, Lockwood, Shepherd, the ATF and airport responded. "It seems like things are pretty well contained. I see the water tenders coming in and out of here. It seems like the authorities have got the situation under control," George Page said.

Shepherd Fire Chief Phil Ehlers confirmed one person was burned and taken to the hospital. Ehlers said the ATF would be following up with the investigation. Property owner, Larry Carpenter, said he sold land on which Evolution Pyrotechnics sits to Russ Nichols a few years back.

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