- Associated Press - Monday, December 21, 2015

PETERBOROUGH, N.H. (AP) - New Hampshire Ball Bearings has agreed to pay a $150,000 penalty for a factory explosion in Peterborough that blew out windows and injured 15 people last year.

The attorney general’s office and Department of Environmental Services announced the settlement Monday. They said $5,000 will be used to help local first responders to continue a program the company voluntarily undertook shortly after the February 2014 accident. The remaining $145,000 will go to a dedicated hazardous waste fund.

According to the state, a tank containing acid used to treat ball bearings was emptied into a drum that may have held an incompatible substance such as isopropyl alcohol. The ensuing reaction caused pressure to build up inside the sealed drum, leading to an explosion.

Officials say the company promptly resolved all compliance issues.

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