January 31, 2006

Around six hurt in N. Carolina chemical plant blast

RALEIGH, North Carolina (Reuters) - Around six people were
injured on Tuesday in an explosion at a chemical plant in North
Carolina, an official said.

Two of the injured were taken by air ambulance to hospitals
further away in North Carolina, said Lisa Propst, 911
communications manager for Burke County.

The explosion at the Synthron Inc. plant in Morganton
occurred shortly before 11:30 a.m. EST (1630 GMT), said Propst.

The extent of the injuries was not known, nor was the cause
of the blast.

No one was answering telephone calls at the plant.

According to chemical industry Web sites, Synthron is a
subsidiary of French independent specialty chemicals company
Protex International group.

(Additional reporting by Michael Christie in Miami)