Image: chemical plant explosion
Courtesy KATC
Explosions rock a chemical plant in a New Iberia, La. industrial park news services
updated 6/14/2011 7:26:08 PM ET 2011-06-14T23:26:08

Explosions rocked a chemical plant in a southern Louisiana industrial park, forcing evacuations within a mile of the factory. Initial reports of injuries were incorrect.

Iberia Parish sheriff's deputies on Tuesday closed Louisiana Highway 182 on the western side of the town about 75 miles west of New Orleans.  Trooper Stephen Hammons said all employees at the plant were accounted for.

An official at Iberia Medical Center had said four injured workers were being flown to a burn unit. But Capt. Ryan Turner told NBC News there were no injuries or fatalities in the blast and police later said no one was hurt.

The Daily Iberian newspaper reported the first explosion occurred about 4 p.m. and blasts could still be heard 20 minutes later. A witness told the newspaper that the blast sounded like thunder when it happened, shortly before 4 p.m. CT. Explosions, with fire rising above the treeline, could still be heard at 4:20 p.m., he said.

A spokesman for Multi-Chem Group in Houston said the company was gathering information on what happened at its plant. The company, based in San Angelo, Texas, makes oilfield production chemicals.

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