EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

October 11, 2013

Burn victim in Dow lab explosion dies

Sara Brown

---- — NORTH ANDOVER — A man burned over half his body in a laboratory explosion at The Dow Chemical Company plant has died from his injuries.

A spokesperson for the office of the Essex District Attorney yesterday confirmed that the victim is a 51-year-old resident of Peabody. She declined to identify the victim last night until she is satisfied his next of kin are notified.

He suffered his burns during an explosion Wednesday inside the Rohm and Haas laboratory at 60 Willow St.

The man was working alone in a lab when the explosion occurred shortly before noon. He was flown by helicopter to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston where he died yesterday.

Jennifer Mieth, spokesperson for state Fire Marshal Stephen Coan said she was unable to say what caused the explosion, but that the accident was still under investigation.

She said the sprinkler system inside the laboratory contained the fire and that the fire alarm alerted everyone so they were able to get out of the building unharmed.

“It’s not a criminal investigation. It’s more like an OSHA kind of thing,” said Carrie Kimball-Monahan, spokesperson for the Essex County District Attorney’s Office.

“There isn’t anything we can say on the specifics,” said Jeremy Cole, a spokesperson for Dow. “We’re focusing on (mourning a coworker) and our employees.”

The plant develops electronic materials used in manufacturing LED lights.