Two killed, ten injured in fire and building collapse in Omaha

Jan 20, 2014

Authorities say the investigation in to the cause of a fire and building collapse that killed at least two people could take weeks.


Omaha Interim Fire Chief Bernard Kanger says one body has been recovered from the rubble of the International Nutrition building. He's been identified as 52-year-old Keith Everett of Omaha. Firefighters were called to the plant just after 10 am Monday.


Kanger says 38 employees were at the plant at the time of the fire and collapse, and ten are hospitalized.


"The initial reports that are coming in to our office, Omaha Fire Department individuals rescued a total of five people. Four of these people were rescued via ground ladders or aerial apparatus from different levels within the structure that was impacted. One individual had to be physically cut from the debris. This individual was buried in concrete and steel, and our crews worked diligently for 10 to 15 minutes in order to remove this victim and get him outside of the structure."


Four of those ten are in critical condition. Seven more were treated at the scene, and all workers have been accounted for. Kanger says the second and third floors of the International Nutrition building collapsed on to the first floor.


Omaha Fire crews, along with an Urban Search and Rescue Team from Lincoln, will return to the site this morning. Kanger says authorities are classifying what happened as an industrial accident with fire and significant structural damage, but “are not prepared to confirm there was an explosion.”