GRAND ISLAND, Neb. — An unfortunate explosion rocked the Hornady Manufacturing facility near Grand Island, resulting in the tragic loss of one employee and injuring two others. The incident unfolded on Friday, October 13, 2023, drawing immediate attention from local authorities and stirring deep concern within the community.
The ill-fated incident occurred approximately at 9:47 a.m. within what is known as the PVE West Building. Initial responders to the site, the Cairo Fire Department, were confronted with the aftermath of an explosion that, according to investigations, took place during the mixing process of the primer compound.
The Nebraska State Fire Marshal Agency confirmed the identity of the deceased as 32-year-old Adriana Alvarez of Grand Island, an employee of Hornady Manufacturing. “One of our babies lost their momma in this accident. She leaves behind a beautiful little girl and wife,” lamented The Teaching Tree childcare facility in Grand Island, shedding light on the deep personal loss experienced by Alvarez’s family. However, amidst the sorrow, the Teaching Tree facility also underscored the cherished memories Adriana left behind, reminding everyone that she took immense pride in her family.
Two other employees were unfortunately caught in the blast. Although they sustained injuries, one managed to transport themselves to a local hospital, while the other was promptly taken by ambulance. But thankfully, both were treated and released on the same day.
In an outpouring of grief and support, Team Hornady expressed their devastation in a statement released via Twitter. “We are devastated for our employee, their family, and loved ones, as well as the entire Hornady team. We appreciate the outreach we have received while we grieve the loss of one of our own.” This sentiment echoed their earlier statement, ensuring that the incident was isolated to the primer facility without affecting any of the broader manufacturing units.
Hornady Mourns Following Fatal Incident
Hornady is devastated following a fatal incident that took the life of an employee in the primer manufacturing facility.
We are devastated for our employee, their family and loved ones, as well as the entire Hornady team. We are working… pic.twitter.com/huSaNnc1Ym
— Hornady (@TeamHornady) October 16, 2023
Following comprehensive investigations, authorities have unequivocally termed the explosion as accidental. This conclusion, however, provides little solace to a community shaken by such a catastrophe. Despite the stringent safety measures, this is a stark reminder of our industry’s risks when providing the essential materials for our right to keep and bear arms that keep America free.
Hornady Manufacturing, a renowned name in Grand Island, has a long-standing history of extremely safe production of bullets and ammunition. Yet, this event will undoubtedly cast an extended heartache on its operations for some time.
Various agencies, including the Cairo Fire Department, Alda Fire Department, Wood River Fire Department, Grand Island Rural Fire Department, Hall County Attorney’s Office, Hall County Sheriff’s Office, and the Nebraska State Fire Marshal Agency, responded to the incident. Their swift action and combined efforts ensured the situation was handled efficiently and sensitively.
Because of the event’s gravity, news surrounding the explosion and its aftermath have captured local and national attention.
As investigations conclude and the firearms community starts the healing process, it is crucial to remember and honor those affected and send our heartfelt condolences to the Hornady family.