UPDATE2: A source who wished to remain anonymous said the blast shot debris approximately 200 feet into the air. There is insulation and other debris scattered across the Nosler campus on Columbia, and into the parking lot near the shuttle stop for Mount Bachelor.
Employees I spoke with were rattled but safe. One man’s stepdaughter rushed to the scene, another man’s significant other was visibly upset until she was told by another employee that her partner was uninjured.
The Public Relations Director, Zach Waterman, was initially counted as missing but was quickly located. He had left the Nosler campus briefly to run an errand. Waterman noted that the building suffered “significant structural damage,” but the extent of damage and how long it would be until operations resumed in that building was “pending the full investigation.”
UPDATE: Scene is secured. Just left the secured perimeter of Nosler’s location on SW Columbia. Some employees have been allowed to leave the premises. Not all of the vehicles have been cleared to leave the Nosler campus. All employees are safe.
An unnamed source, who was not allowed to speak on the record for Nosler, noted that one employee was briefly trapped in a bathroom or closet. His shirt was burned, or sooty but he was able to escape without injury prior to the blast. He also stated barrels were being packed but he was unaware of what ignited the materials.
Another source explained that there are subterranean ballistics chambers/tunnels where all materials are safety tested prior to shipment.
Just a block away from our home in Bend, Oregon there was a major explosion. As we drove down our street approximately 15 minutes ago, there was acrid orange smoke. Dozens of employees were on the street.
A few moments later, the Bend Fire Department was arriving on scene. Then, a blast that shook the ground and every window. It was deafening. Many police and firefighters have secured the scene.
I will have reports on any casualties shortly. Photo was taken by me less than two minutes after the blast.
Nosler manufactures bullets, rifles, ammunition and reloading data.