- Associated Press - Friday, October 9, 2015

MEXICO, Mo. (AP) - Operations have been shut down at a central Missouri plant that makes materials used in fracking.

The Mexico Ledger reports (https://bit.ly/1VJ0Gnq ) the Shamrock Proppant plant in Mexico shut down indefinitely Thursday in the wake of the recent downturn in oil prices and a pullback in fracking operations.

Proppants are a treated sand or ceramic gravel mixture used in the fracking industry to open cracks in deep-rock formations to help release oil.

The Energy Information Administration says U.S. oil production decreased by 120,000 barrels per day in September from August.

Frank O’Brien Jr., Shamrock’s president, says he hopes to bring the plant back up as soon as the industry begins faring better.

He says six of Shamrock’s 25 employees are staying at the plant to ensure it’s shut down properly.

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