According to Justine Barati, the Director of Public and Congressional Affairs for Joint Munitions Command, no workers were in the building at the time of either incident. One employee who was in proximity to the initial fire was transported to Holston Valley Medical Center for observation, Barati said, and out of an overabundance of safety.
An alarm sounded near one of the buildings at approximately 8 a.m., indicating a fire. Due to the nature of the work that takes place at HAAP, Barati told the Times News she was not able to identify the building where the fire took place, but noted the 2,400-square-foot structure was near the rear of the installation.
Emergency personnel on site immediately responded to the scene and the building was secured. Barry Brickey, public information officer for the Kingsport Fire Department, said KFD personnel were called in for stand by and were positioned at the fire station inside the plant shortly before 9 a.m. However, the KFD was not requested to assist with the response.
More about the explosion from the Kingsport Times News.