In breaking news, there has been an explosion at the Stellantis Chrysler assembly plant in Windsor, Canada. The incident occurred in the plant that assembles the Chrysler Pacifica minivan. At the time of publication, there have been no reported injuries or fatalities. Police are actively looking for a suspect or suspects.
Police say Stellantis plant explosion was “intentional”
According to a breaking news report from Automotive News, detectives with the Windsor Police Service Ontario, Canada, are investigating what they referred to as “an intentional” explosion at the Stellantis assembly plant.
The report says that police were called to the plant, which assembles the Chrysler Pacifica minivan and Chrysler Voyager minivan, at 5:45 p.m. ET on November 4th. Police said the plant was evacuated and that no one was injured, and the explosion did not cause a fire.
Police said that “suspicious items” were located at the site of the Stellantis plant explosion and launched a probe.
A perimeter was established around the scene, and authorities called the explosive disposal unit (EDU), K-9 Unit, forensic identification unit, and arson unit to participate in the investigation.
At the time of publishing, police have not said what exploded. However, it was stated that it was a “suspicious package” that detonated.
“Through investigation, EDU located a suspicious package that detonated. Further examination and testing of the package will occur as part of the investigation,” said the EDU in a statement. “It should be noted that the suspicious device was located in the area of the facility not generally used for general work and acts as storage facility. The incident occurred on the west side of the facility on the second floor.”
“Investigators do believe this was an intentional act and are seeking any information that may help identify a suspect or suspects,” the EDU continued.
Autoworkers were protesting vaccine mandates before the explosion
Before the explosion, a few dozen autoworkers were protesting outside of the Unifor union building. The protestors were speaking out against the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine mandate imposed by each of the “big three” (Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis) at their Canadian factories.
The automakers each released a statement announcing that by the end of December 2021, all employees at Canadian factories and facilities would need to provide proof of vaccination, or they would lose their jobs.
Ford has imposed a similar mandate in the United States for its salaried employees but not its hourly UAW staff.
There has been no statement from the police that the suspect in the Stellantis plant explosion is one of those protestors or a disgruntled employee unhappy with the vaccine mandate.
Did an IED cause the explosion?
Regarding the Stellantis pant explosion, police initially referred to the suspicious package as “an improvised explosive device,” but retracted that statement later on.
“The definition of a previous posting calling the suspicious package an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) was inaccurate as all the components have yet to be tested,” the Windsor police said in a statement. “The threshold to confirm as an IED has yet to be met.”
We will continue to follow this story as it develops.