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Two Pyrotechnic Corporations And Three Company Officers Fined a Combined $88,000 in Fatal Plant Explosion Case

Pyro Products, Inc., Grubville, MO, and its sister company, Next FX, Inc., Columbus, MT, were fined $70,000 and $10,000 respectively by a U.S. District Court judge in St. Louis, MO for violating hazardous materials transportation regulations related to fatal fireworks manufacturing plant explosions between 1999 and 2001. Pyro officers Ronald R. Walker and Kim J. Walker, each were sentenced to 13 months in prison and $3,000 in fines following their May guilty plea to charges of conspiring to illegally transport hazardous wastes and illegal storage of explosives. Russell R. Nickel, former vice president of Next FX, was fined $2,000 and ordered to serve 2 months in prison following his guilty plea for making false statements to OSHA. The case was investigated jointly with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; and the Missouri State Fire Marshal’s Office.