WAUKEGAN, Ill. (AP) Waukegan Fire officials say an evacuation was underway moments before a deadly explosion at a factory on the northwest side.

Waukegan Fire Marshal Steve Lenzi says managers at the AB Specialty Silicones plant sensed something was wrong and were working to get employees out of the structure before the Friday night blast.

Three employees were killed and a fourth worker whose body hasn’t been recovered is also believed to be dead.

Three of the deceased workers have been identified as Wisconsin men, including 29-year-old Allen Stevens of Salem, 56-year-old Jeff Cummings of Kenosha and 53-year-old Byron Biehn of Union Grove.

Waukegan Fire Chief George Bridges says all reports indicate those who died in the blast did so heroically.



Recovery efforts at the explosion site continue. However Lake County Coroner Dr. Howard Cooper says the recovery effort has been a slow one.


There were 9 people working in the plant before the blast.