Crews Respond To Explosions At Newburyport Chemical Manufacturing Business

NEWBURYPORT, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — Hazmat teams are responding to a series of explosions overnight at a Newburyport pharmaceutical manufacturing company.

A fire alarm first went off around 4:15 a.m. at PCI Synthesis, located at 9 Opportunity Way. There were three explosions when first responders arrived that were followed by three more explosions.

Crews from Newburyport, Amesbury, and Salisbury were called in to assist.

Officials say that one of the explosions tore a hole the the roof of the affected building.

Some employees were in the building at the time of the explosions, and were evacuated. Currently, no injuries have been reported.

Authorities have yet to determine a cause for the explosions.

PCI Synthesis has been cited with multiple safety violations, totaling thousands of dollars in penalties. Some of them are from as early as June of last year, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

In 2015, PCI Synthesis was cited with "serious" safety violations, according to OSHA.

The citation was for an "occupational exposure to hazardous chemicals in laboratories." They were fined thousands of dollars.

WBZ NewsRadio also found records citing safety concerns involving "Polycarbon Industires," a company that was doing business as PCI Synthesis, going as far back as 2010.

The citation, according to OSHA, said there was a possibility of toxic vapors "accumulating in pits," and that the "employer did not address or prevent the covered process or storage of thionyl cloride from being struck by forklifts."

OSHA has confirmed that they are responding to the scene.

WBZ NewsRadio's James Rojas (@WBZJamesRojas) reports

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