NEWBURYPORT, MASS. (WHDH) - Clean-up work resumed at a damaged chemical plant in Newburyport Tuesday as officials look to clear the way for crews to demolish part of the building in the wake of last week’s deadly explosion at the site.

Emergency crews were first called to the Seqens plant on Opportunity Way around 12:45 a.m. Thursday, where officials said firefighters spent roughly one hour battling heavy fire conditions after the blast. 

Five workers were in the building at the time of the explosion. Of them, four were taken to a local hospital and released after treatment, according to local officials. The body of the fifth worker, identified as 62-year-old Jack O’Keefe, was found hours later.

Surveillance video from nearby cameras captured the explosion, showing a massive, bright fireball that launched flames and debris high into the air. SKY7-HD later flew over the scene, revealing a torn apart complex with pieces of roof material, pipes and metal scraps piled on one another.

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Crews have been on scene in recent days taking chemicals out of the plant and working to set up steel supports to hold up what is left of the building.

As chemical removal and support work wraps up, Newburyport Mayor Sean Reardon and Fire Chief Stephen Bradbury III on Monday said the city had given Seqens a deadline of 8 a.m. Wednesday to begin demolishing the building addition where the explosion happened. At the time officials said they expected the demolition process to begin Tuesday afternoon

In a separate statement later in the day, though, Bradbury said high winds in the area forced crews to temporarily stop clean-up work already underway after the damaged building’s walls shifted. 

Officials said there was no danger of imminent collapse as a crane continued to support the building. Bradbury’s statement continued, saying officials made the decision to pause work for the day “out of an abundance of caution.”

On Tuesday, Bradbury said crews had decided it was safe to resume work, adding that demolition is now expected to begin on Wednesday. 

“There are two large vats of chemicals that need to be drained, and several more barrels that need to be removed,” Bradbury said. “The two chemicals in the larger storage containers cannot come into contact with one another, so the process continues at a careful, methodical pace.”

The cause of the explosion remains under investigation.

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