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Last updated on Friday, March 29, 2013
(CRANE) - Multiple sources have reported an explosion Thursday at the Crane Naval Warfare Center.
The explosion happened around 6 p.m. in the pyrotech area on the base.
As many as six people suffered minor injuries like abrasions and bruising. All were treated and released from IU Health Bloomington Hospital.
There was significant damage to the building, including the roof and possible wall collapsing. Inside the building workers were handling white phosphorus. Smoke-producing white phosphorus munitions are very common, particularly as smoke grenades for infantry, loaded in grenade launchers on tanks and other armored vehicles, or as part of the ammunition allotment for artillery or mortars. These create smoke screens to mask movement, position or the origin of fire from the enemy. White phosphorus is used in bombs, artillery, mortars, and short-range missiles which burst into burning flakes of phosphorus upon impact.
Firefighters from the Richland-Taylor Township Volunteer Fire Department in Scotland were dispatched to the blaze and were on the scene until 7:30 pm when the fire was extinguished.
Crane officials could not comment on the explosion but government officials did confirm there was an explosion and injuries.
This is a developing story and more information will be released as soon as it becomes available.
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