Explosion, fire reported at supplier Meridian’s plant in Canada

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An explosion and fire has stopped production at a car supplier in Southwestern Ontario, according to local media there.

Emergency crews responded Monday night to the incident in one of the three Meridian Lightweight Technologies plants in Strathroy, Ont. The factory of magnesium foundries remained closed on Tuesday and it was not known when the production would be resumed, reported Blackburn News.

"As explosions go, I suppose it was a small explosion, but certainly enough to do some structural damage to Plant A – the diecast plant," Greg McClinchey, the CAO of Strathroy-Caradoc, told Blackburn.

Two people were struck by falling debris and suffered minor injuries, according to Global News.

"The plant was in operation, people were working, I think it was a minimal crew, but there were people who were working at the time," McClinchey told Global.

It is not immediately known which car manufacturers supply the factory in Canada, but the company is known to supply various automakers of plants all over the world.

Calls to Meridian after the opening hours were not immediately returned.

Michigan factory fire

Another fire in Meridian's magnesium products plant in Eaton Rapid, Mich., Injured two employees on May 2 and disrupted operations at five car manufacturers, including the production of Ford F-series trucks. The disruption of the parts of the instrument cluster fouled the availability of the F-series during a part of the summer.

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The fire also affected General Motors, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Mercedes-Benz. International Inc. and BMW or North America. At that time, those car manufacturers refused to say how long the output of some vehicles, including the Chrysler Pacifica, Chevrolet Express and BMW X5 and X6, had slowed.

The specialized parts that Meridian provides for a situation where having a back-up supplier is "simply not an option", told Abhay Vadhavkar, director of manufacturing, engineering and technology at the Center for Automotive Research, in May after Automotive in Michigan Automotive News . fire.

"They are the only supplier in North America that can deliver the parts to that volume," he said.

"Unlike other stamped parts, [the F-series bolsters] are highly developed and something that no other supplier could pick up and make in a week. "

The Michigan plant also had a history of security violations, reported reports.

Meridian is located in Plymouth, Michigan, near Detroit. In addition to Canada, it has production facilities in Michigan, China, Mexico and the United Kingdom, according to the website. Meridian was acquired by the Chinese Wanfeng Auto Holding Group in December 2013.