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Omaha Company Heads Plead Guilty In 2015 Explosion Case

Jul 14, 2021
Workers Compensation Watch

An Omaha company and its owners are pleading guilty in connection to a 2015 railcar explosion that killed two workers.  Nebraska Railcar Cleaning Services, Steven Michael Braithwaite, president and owner of the business, and Adam Thomas Braithwaite, vice-president and co-owner, pleaded guilty this week to conspiracy, violating worker safety standards resulting in death, and submitting false information to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.  Workers Adrian LaPour and Dallas Foulk were killed in the explosion and a third worker was injured.  The Braithwaites will be sentenced

Omaha World Herald

Multiple explosions and a fire in an underground concrete electrical vault rocked downtown Omaha and forced the evacuation of a nearby hotel, but no injuries were reported. Authorities say the incident happened Monday night when a power transformer that sits under the sidewalk next to the Doubletree Hotel caught fire. Acting Omaha Fire Battalion Chief Mickey McLaughlin says explosions from the transformer continued after firefighters arrived, producing a large amount of smoke and flames coming from the sidewalk grates over the vault. The hotel was not damaged by the nearby fire.

WOWT

Omaha police and fire investigators say they have not determined the cause of an explosion that killed three people last year. Investigators said Thursday natural gas was leaking inside the south Omaha home in early December. Several sources, such as the furnace or pilot light, could have ignited the gas. Investigators do not have evidence to indicate if criminal activity was involved but will continue to investigate. Theresa Toledo and Angela Miller died. Toledo's grandson, Alexander Toledo, died a day later.

GoFundMe

Police say a third person has died from injuries received in an explosion that leveled a house in Omaha, Nebraska. Police said Thursday in a news release that 28-year-old Alexander Toledo died Wednesday at a burn unit in Kansas City, Missouri. Toledo had been found by neighbors sitting outside the destroyed home with severe burns following the Tuesday morning blast. Toledo's grandmother, 73-year-old Theresa Toledo, and another woman, 45-year-old Angela Miller, were killed in the explosion. Seventy-two-year-old Larry Rodriguez was critically injured.

US News and World Report

Fire officials say an explosion that leveled a home in Omaha, Nebraska, has left two people dead and two others critically injured. Omaha Fire Department Battalion Chief Scott Fitzpatrick says firefighters responded to the explosion shortly after 8 a.m. Tuesday. Fitzpatrick says the house was leveled and completely destroyed. The explosion also caused significant damage to homes on either side of the house. The blast in south-central Omaha rained splintered lumber and other debris throughout the neighborhood, and witnesses say it was felt and heard miles away.

Omaha World Herald

The owner of a Nebraska dry-cleaning business has pleaded no contest to charges that accused him of causing the explosion that destroyed his business. The Omaha World-Herald reports that 54-year-old Michael McKernan of Valley entered the plea Thursday to second-degree arson and burning to defraud an insurer. McKernan owned Wardrobe Spa. He was there on Oct. 7, 2018, when the building exploded. Deputy Sarpy County Attorney Ben Perlman said McKernan had intentionally drilled holes into gas lines that connected to a dryer and a furnace.

People in Nebraska celebrated the July Fourth holiday as many Americans did, with a barrage of fireworks. But this year's explosive festivities also came with a number of headaches. In Omaha, police say they received nearly 1,900 fireworks complaints in the days before and after the Fourth of July when fireworks are legal to sell and use. Police say that's a more than 30% increase from fireworks complaints received last year.

(Omaha, NE)  --  An Omaha business is leveled in an explosion.  The blast took place yesterday morning inside a dry cleaning business near 168th and Harrison.  No one was inside the business and nobody was injured.  The cause of the explosion is under investigation.

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Authorities say a woman killed when a house in Omaha exploded was a property inspector sent to check its condition after a tenant was evicted.