On October 25, 2010, federal labor officials proposed fining a gun and ammunition manufacturer $1.2 million. The government stated that two men who died in an explosion at the manufacturer’s Colebrook, New Hampshire facility weren’t properly trained and had been feeding explosive powder into equipment by hand. Specifically, it was alleged that Black Mag LLC, the operator of the MDM Muzzleloader plant, chose not to use or install remote starters, isolated operating stations, or appropriate shields and barriers for employees making the gunpowder. Employees also were not given proper protective gear such as fire-resistant clothing and face shields, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”).
OSHA issued 54 citations against Black Mag LLC. Jesse Kennett, 49, of Stratford and Donald Kendall, 56, of Colebrook were both killed in the blast, having been on the job only one month; another man was injured. The explosion caused heavy damage to the facility, shook nearby buildings, and forced the evacuation of dozens of homes.
Although the labor department didn’t specify the exact trigger of the explosion, it described a number of unsafe conditions it said contributed to the blast.