One Dead in Explosion on Larkin Circle in Sparks

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SPARKS, NV - Sparks police say one person died Friday morning in an explosion on Larkin Circle in Sparks.

Police say it happened shortly after 8AM Friday at Sierra Chemical. A man police describe as 'a fairly recent' new hire was filling a 550-gallon tank with compressed air to check for leaks. It's a practice that is required on the tanks about every two years.

The exact cause of the explosion is still under investigation, but one theory is the tank was over-pressurized. When emergency crews arrived, they found the employee near the tank and he was pronounced dead on scene.

There was no fire or evacuation, with no chemicals involved, and Sparks Fire Marshal Bob King says there is no danger to surrounding areas. No one else is hurt.

Police say no foul play is suspected; they and OSHA are looking into this as an industrial accident.

The name of the victim hasn't been released.

According to a news release by the parent company:

All Sierra operations have been voluntarily suspended while the investigation continues. Grief counseling is being provided to all employees. Sierra will work with family members of the deceased to help them through this difficult time.

Sierra Chemical Company is a member of Carus Group Inc. Sierra manufactures and distributes environmental products for municipal, agricultural, mining and industrial markets.