Search continues for fourth victim of Waukegan plant explosion
Posted: May 7, 2019 5:07 PM CST
“This is an investigation that we are currently in recovery still,” Waukegan Fire Chief George Bridges Jr. said.
Crews sifted through debris all day Tuesday.
“Right now we’re still uncovering different parts, and going back through parts that we’ve sifted before, and we’re just going to do everything we can to make sure that we can give closure to the other family that is waiting,” Lake County Coroner, Dr. Howard Cooper said.
Tuesday, the Lake County Coroner confirmed that 57-year-old Jeff Cummings of Kenosha and 53-year-old Byron Biehn of Brighton Township were recovered from the rubble over the weekend. 29-year-old Allen Stevens from Salem died at the hospital.
The blast captured on surveillance video Friday night led to a fire that engulfed the plant in flames.
“When you have an explosion like this we don’t know where everybody is going to be, so we have to go through painstakingly piece by piece also we don’t know what condition the bodies are going to be in,” Dr. Cooper said.
The debris was sifted through by hand or lifted by large machinery. A cadaver dog was brought in several times to help, but no luck.
“It’s a really slow process, but it’s very dangerous and we need to make sure everybody stays safe,” the coroner said.
Crews are committed to the search and are not giving up.
“We’ll be out here as long as it takes to recover the last victim,” Dr. Cooper said.
Once crews find the final victim, the investigation into the cause of the explosion will become the main focus.