This is the latest update of TheDetroitBureau.com’s initial report, posted at 5:30 PM EDT.
An explosion at a battery vehicle research lab at the General Motors Technical Center resulted in six injuries, including one hospitalization. The lab was evacuated and it and adjoining offices will remain closed at least for another day. The automaker says the incident was the result of “extreme testing on a prototype battery.”
Though the maker stresses that its Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid was not involved in the incident, the explosion could prove another setback considering the brouhaha that followed reports of several fires involving the Volt last year subsequent to crash testing by federal safety regulators.
“An incident occurred about 8:45 a.m. Wednesday inside a test chamber at the General Motors Alternative Energy Center during extreme testing of an experimental battery,” the maker stated in a news release. “Chemical gases from the battery cells were released and ignited in the enclosed chamber. The battery itself was intact. The battery tested and the incident have no connection with the Chevrolet Volt or any other GM production vehicle.”
The automaker reports five employees were treated at the scene with another worker’s injuries requiring hospitalization.