American Machinist

Fire ravages GM plant.(Retrospective)

THE AUGUST 12, 1953, FIRE AT GENERAL MOTOR'S Livonia, Mich., automatic-transmission plant made top news in the August 31 issue of AMERICAN MACHINIST. Less than 10% of the 4-year-old, $75-million plant was salvageable and six people died as a result of the fire.

Allegedly the fire began when sparks from a welding torch ignited a drip trough under an overhead conveyor. Flames raced along the trough to a solvent tank that exploded, further spreading the fire. After the explosion, employees ran for the exits, leaving main electrical supplies and machines running. …

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