Fire, explosions at chemical plant in eastern Missouri

AFFTON, Mo. (AP) — Fire and several explosions were reported Thursday at a chemical plant in eastern Missouri, authorities said.

Fire personnel responded to the scene at the Manor Chemical Plant in Affton, where the explosion was reported about 2:45 p.m., authorities said.

The south St. Louis County business is a wholesale chemical distributor but also makes “custom blends” of chemicals for cars, paint, printing, dry cleaning and industrial manufacturing, according to its website. Some of the products Manor Chemical sells include acetone, rubbing alcohol and other flammable chemicals.

St. Louis County police were helping to evacuate people within a half-mile of the plant, the department said. Students in Affton schools were held past dismissal until officials receive word the situation is safe, the district said in a tweet.

There was no immediate word of injuries or deaths. St. Louis media reported thick plumes of smoke could be seen for miles around the plant.

Affton is about 11 miles (17.70 kilometers) southwest of St. Louis.

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