5 treated for shock after explosion at Rio Tinto plant

Five people were treated for shock after an explosion at the Rio Tinto plant in Sorel-Tracy, Que., this morning.

Company spokesperson Claudine Gagnon says the workers were treated at the hospital and discharged.

The Sûreté du Québec said the explosion occurred around 4:30 a.m at the plant, about 90 kilometres northeast of Montreal. The company's emergency response team worked with firefighters at the scene to secure the factory and put out the fire.

The incident is related to a gas line connected to one of the furnaces at the plant, according to Gagnon.

She said no one was hurt. More than 1,400 people work at the site.

There is no word on damage to the plant, which manufactures raw materials for titanium dioxide markets, producing high purity metal powders and pig iron.

"Everyone in the neighbourhood heard the explosion this morning. It was a big boom, it was very loud," said Sorel Mayor Serge Péloquin.

​The plant has been shut down for the time being. It is unclear when it will reopen.