By Elizabeth Matthews

GRANITE CITY, Ill. (KSDK) - Nine workers were injured in the Amsted Rail plant explosion Thursday morning, but two remain in critical condition.

Reginald Golliday and Danny Wilson, both have spent years working at the facility were airlifted to Mercy hospital after first being taken to another hospital.

"It was really horrific I couldn't put a better word on it than that," says friend and neighbor Richard Brown.

He lives across the street from Reginald "Reggie" Golliday in East St. Louis. They've been neighbors for more than a decade and Brown says word travelled quickly through the neighborhood about the Reggie's accident at the plant.

Brown says he sees Reggie almost every day and every day they talk.

"About life and different things and day to day, I used to mess with him, 'man I am going to retire soon and you will still be working, you know and I will be watching you in the morning,'" says Brown.

Reggie was one of two workers that suffered critical injuries during the Thursday morning plant explosion. It happened around 8:15 a.m. in the cleaning and finishing area of the plant. Firefighters and OSHA are still investigating what led to the explosion.

Brown describes Reggie as a good friend, a great man and proud father.

"You know I wish he was my dad as he treats his kids, he took care of his kids so well and everything, bought them everything and he was really good, he was just a real peach of a guy," says Brown.

Reggie and the other man Danny Wilson were taken to Mercy hospital Thursday morning because of their burns. We've been told the men also suffered smoke inhalation and broken bones.

Granite City Fire Capt. Bert Houston says the explosion occurred after gas caught fire in the finishing area of the plant, which makes railcar components. What ignited the gas wasn't known.

Information from the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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