Carbide Industries explosion survivor awaiting results - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Carbide Industries explosion survivor awaiting investigation results

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB)---When Greg Kilgore reflects on March 21st of 2011, he thinks about his two co-workers who died from burn injuries.

"Think about it all the time about Steve and Louie. Wish they was still here," says Greg Kilgore.

He can't forget the neck and shoulder injuries he suffered himself when a furnace exploded inside the plant, which produces calcium carbide.

"The next time I turned around it blew up, right in our faces," says Kilgore.

"It was a very large explosion. It threw 3800 degree material over several hundred yards," John Gant, the General Manager of Carbide Industries said days after the explosion.

It took Kilgore a year to return to work.

"I was scared at first. I was scared at first. I just thought...what else could I do. I like my job and I didn't feel like it was unsafe where I didn't want to go back. That's why I went back," says Greg Kilgore.

On Thursday, the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board will present its findings regarding the explosion.

"We haven't really been talking about it a lot at work but everybody's curious about what went on and what really ignited it to blow," says Greg Kilgore.

John Gant, General Manager of Carbide Industries LLC, issued WDRB the following statement:

"Carbide Industries has been supportive of the CSB's investigation since the incident occurred and has addressed all of the recommendations made by the CSB as a result of that investigation.  Additional safeguards and policies have been implemented that will further strengthen the safety and environmental performance at Carbide Industries.  We appreciate the help and support that the CSB has provided over the past 2 years. "

Greg Kilgore says employees are taking this very seriously.

"Safety meetings all the time and everything is new. Most of everything is new. And if anything breaks down, it's immediately fixed. Everybody's working together to keep the company going," says Greg Kilgore.

Kilgore says they passed out a letter at work letting employees know they can attend the meeting.

He says he and his wife will be in attendance to find out what happened.

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