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Man Killed in Co-Op Explosion ID'd, Along with Possible Cause

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A 66 year old man is dead after an explosion around 1:30pm this afternoon at the Co-Alliance Grain Elevator in Union Mills. LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan says the deceased has been identified as James Swank, of Union Mills, cause of death due to multiple blunt force trauma with dismemberment, and the manner of death is accidental.
Sullivan says there is a high probability that this was a grain dust explosion, and that Swank's position was possibly on top on the grain elevator, when the explosion occurred, which was partially filled with corn and soybeans from local farmers. Sullivan says the A-T-F and the State Fire Marshal are on scene, along with the Department of Homeland Security. The LaPorte County Sheriff's Office reports the explosion occurred and was limited to a concrete grain silo that is adjacent to a railroad spur on the grounds of the Co-Op, and that the deceased is an employee who was working in the silo at the time of the explosion. Authorities report no hazardous chemicals were involved or released as a result of the explosion.
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