NEWBURYPORT, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts chemical manufacturing plant reopened Friday, a day after at least six explosions at the facility forced workers to evacuate and blew a hole in the roof.

Seqens North America, formerly PCI Synthesis, in Newburyport, said in a statement Friday that the problem was isolated.

"Most of the facility was untouched and is completely operational; the affected suite represents one small, isolated room," the company statement said. "We want to thank the authorities for their quick work in ensuring the facility is safe and ready to re-open so that we can get back to work."

The company makes chemicals used in medicines.

Firefighters responding to an alarm at 4:30 a.m. Thursday encountered "heavy black smoke" and evacuated the building after hearing three explosions, officials said.

There were about 10 workers in the building at the time. Three more explosions took place about 15 minutes later, including one that blew a 5-foot-by-8-foot (1.5-meter-by-2.5-meter) hole in the roof, officials said.

No injuries were reported, and there was no public health threat.

The cause of the explosions remains under investigation, but the company on Thursday blamed the problem on "a mechanical issue from our steam line."

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.