Chocolate factory explosion in West Reading kills 2, 9 missing – NBC10 Philadelphia

An explosion at a chocolate factory in West Reading, Pennsylvania on Friday afternoon left two people dead and nine others still unaccounted for.

8 people have been admitted to Reading Hospital. Two were admitted in “fair” condition, one patient was transferred and all others will be discharged, the hospital said.

A large explosion occurred at RM Palmer in West Reading at 4:57 p.m. The explosion resulted in the destruction of Building No. located at 55 S 2nd Avenue. 2 was demolished and the neighboring Palmer Building at 77 S 2nd Ave. 1 was damaged, said Chief Wayne Holpen of the West Reading Borough Police Department.

Samantha Cocke, the mayor of West Reading, said the building was flattened and the force of the blast moved the building four feet forward.

The cause of the explosion is currently under investigation. While there is no danger to the surrounding area at this time, the borough is urging residents to avoid the area, Chief Holben said.

Cock said crews would work through the night and weekend to bring the scene under control.

The identities of the victims and those hospitalized have not been released at this time.

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