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The death toll from the Friday explosion of a West Reading chocolate factory has risen to four.
During a Sunday morning press briefing, Police Chief Wayne Holben announced that a fourth body had been pulled from the rubble of the R.M. Palmer Co. plant on South Second Avenue in the early hours of the day.
Officials have not released any details about any of the individuals who lost their lives in the incident.
Three people believed to have been inside the plant at the time of the blast are still unaccounted for, Holben said.
The explosion took place just before 5 p.m. Friday, rocking the borough with a loud, quick blast. Rescue crews have been working around the clock since, digging through the debris in hopes of finding survivors.
One survivor was discovered early Saturday morning. Holben said Sunday that a woman was pulled from the rubble after rescue dogs drew emergency personnel close enough that they could hear her calling for help.
It is believed the woman was on the second floor of the building when it exploded. She was found in the basement of the structure.
Officials did not identify the woman and could not provide an update on her condition other than to say she was conscious at the time of her rescue.
“It was great that we found her,” Mayor Samanth Kaag said.
Kaag said the odds of finding any other survivors continues to dwindle as the hours pass. While Saturday she said that rescue workers were racing against time, Sunday her description was more grim.
“Honestly, it’s just a hold out for hope,” she said.
Rescue efforts at the site are expected to continue throughout the day Sunday.
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