MUSKOGEE, Okla. – Emergency workers found the bodies of two men Wednesday in the wreckage created by an explosion at a scrap metal plant that was felt up to 50 miles away.
The burned bodies were found near the oil-fueled furnace used to melt aluminum at the Yaffe Iron and Metals (search) plant, Muskogee Sheriff's Chief Deputy Darrin Smith said.
The bodies were believed to be those of two missing plant workers, but the state medical examiner did not immediately release identifications.
Smith said the furnace was "blown completely out of the ground."
"I live 12 miles away and I saw the flash of light," he said. "I thought it was lightning."
More than a dozen people were injured, four seriously, and windows were smashed and doors blown in at houses within a five-block radius of the plant after Tuesday night's blast. Firefighters left the scene Wednesday after putting out the last of the burning embers.
Investigators from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (search) were trying to reconstruct how the explosion occurred. No foul play was suspected.
Heavy black smoke forced a dozen families to evacuate their homes, but they were later allowed to return.
Andrew Yaffe, president of the scrap metal company, said smaller blasts had occurred in the furnace before.