Small explosion at HON plant forces brief evacuation

MUSCATINE, Iowa -- A forklift started on fire and ignited a liquid propane tank inside an empty section of the HON Oak Steel factory near downtown Muscatine on Monday, Nov. 27.

The fire and subsequent explosion injured no one, but did force the evacuation of a handful of employees in an adjoining building, a company spokesman said.

The incident happened around 1 p.m. Muscatine Fire responded quickly and extinguished the blaze. There was some smoke and fire damage inside the section of the factory where the forklift was parked, but there was no disruption to production, company officials said.

The cause of the explosion remains under investigation.