The Latest: Plant closed for the day as blast investigated

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. (AP) " The Latest on an explosion at a Missouri military ammunition plant that killed one person and injured four others (all times local):

5 p.m.

The ammunition plant in Missouri where one person was killed and four others were injured has been closed for the day while investigators try to determine what caused the explosion in a primer mixing building.

Lt. Col. Eric Dennis, commander of the plant in Independence, and Jim Nickels, a vice president with Orbital ATK, a private contractor that manages the plant, said at a news conference all the nearly 1,800 employees were sent home after Tuesday's explosion. They declined to release any information on the victim or other details.

Federal investigators fined the plant for workplace safety issues in 2008, 2011 and 2012.

The largest penalty paid was in 2011, when the operator at the time, Alliant ATK, was initially fined $28,000 and paid $5,600 after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited it for "serious" issues with process safety management of hazardous chemicals.

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3:50 p.m.

Federal workplace safety officials will investigate an explosion that killed one worker and injured four others at an Army ammunition plant near Kansas City, Missouri.

Scott Allen with the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration says he has few immediate details about Tuesday afternoon's blast at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, just east of Kansas City. But he says OSHA investigators are heading to the scene.

The Army Joint Munitions Command confirmed in a statement the number of explosion victims but did not reveal how the blast happened.

The 77-year-old plant sits on nearly 4,000 acres and is the first of a dozen Army small-arms factories. The plant makes small-caliber ammunition and tests its reliability. It also operates the NATO test center.

The property has more than 400 buildings and nine warehouses, and has a storage capacity of more than 700,000 square feet. Its workforce includes 29 Department of Army civilians and a soldier to provide contract oversight.

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2:30 p.m.

The U.S. Army says an explosion at an ammunition plant in Independence, Missouri, has left one person dead and three others injured.

The Army Joint Munitions Command says the explosion happened Tuesday at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence. A spokeswoman says no further information was immediately available.

The plant manufactures small-caliber ammunition and operates the North Atlantic Treaty Organization test center. It sits on 3,935 acres in Independence.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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