Two injured in blast at Airgas site in West Virginia

Mon May 13, 2013 7:01pm EDT

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(Reuters) - Two people were injured by an explosion and fire at an Airgas Inc facility in Putnam Country, West Virginia, on Monday a county official said. No deaths were reported.

"About 3:20 p.m. they had an explosion and fire," said Jason Owens, deputy director of public safety at the Putnam County Office of Emergency Management. "The fire is contained, however, it is still burning because they don't want to let the product vent into the atmosphere."

The Airgas distribution center handled industrial gases including nitrogen, acetylene and oxygen that did not pose an immediate threat to public safety, though a section of adjoining highway has been closed, Owens said.

Airgas shares closed down 1 percent to $96.72 on the New York Stock Exchange. Company officials could not be reached for immediate comment.

(Reporting by Scott Malone in Boston; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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