BOSSES at a metal foundry say they expect to find out the cause of an explosion at their plant which sparked a response from emergency services in days.

FSE Foundry, which is based in Swinbourne Drive at the Springfield Industrial Estate, confirmed there were no injuries to any workers or emergency services staff in the incident on Friday, November 19.

Fire teams from Braintree, Dunmow and South Woodham Ferrers were called at around 12.14pm following reports of a furnace exploding, resulting in a fire.

All staff members at the factory were evacuated, with firefighters working alongside site staff to tackle the blaze.

Staff at other businesses on the industrial estate near to the factory were also evacuated during the incident as a precaution, because a number of gas cylinders were in the foundry.

The fire was out by 3pm and smoke was cleared quickly with the factory re-opening at 4pm after electrical and gas safety checks.

The foundry does not produce at weekends, so normal work recommenced on Monday at 7am with all but one furnace in action by 9.30am.

In a statement, FSE Group directors said: “There was a metal melting incident on one of our furnaces at 12.10pm on Friday at our site in Springwood Industrial Estate.

“The formal company emergency evacuation plan was immediately instigated, controlled by directors’ incident recovery team and company fire marshals.

“The fire service attended quickly, including the ambulance service as a precautionary measure and police.

“Although all electrical power and mains gas supplies had been quickly isolated and the fire contained from spreading, a decision was made to evacuate neighbouring factories and to close Swinbourne Drive.

“This was done because of the potential wider hazards of a small number process gas cylinders stored and identified in the factory.

They added: “A clear statement of cause for those concerned is expected to be established by the end of this week.

“Normal regulatory procedures are being followed. Environmental authorities are satisfied that smoke, readily dispersed, was not hazardous.

“Our affected neighbours and the emergency services have been formally thanked for their co-operation and understanding, and also thanks go to two companies for spontaneously supplying refreshments and toilet facilities to those evacuated during the incident.

“The fire officer in charge has already reported publicly that FSEG incident recovery teams reacted in a very professional manner.

“This joint teamwork limited damage, eliminated injury and minimised the inconvenience and involvement of external parties."