Former NY mayor dies, 2 others hospitalized in food processor explosion


SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (Nexstar Media Wire) — A former upstate New York mayor has died after a high-pressure food processor exploded during testing Wednesday morning.

According to Rensselaer County, the blast killed Joseph Kapp, who was a mayor of the City of Rensselaer in the 1990s and was a longtime member of the Hudson Valley Community College Board of Trustees. He also had a long career in research and invention, the County said.

The President of Hudson Valley Community College released a statement after Kapp’s death:

“As a true friend, a remarkable leader, and the longest serving trustee on our board, Joe Kapp will be greatly missed by our college community. Once a student at Hudson Valley, Joe gave back to the college immensely and served admirably as a trustee for two decades. With heavy hearts, we share our deepest sympathies with Joe’s wife, Yolanta, and the entire Kapp family.”

Roger Ramsammy, Ph.D. President, Hudson Valley Community College

The explosion happened at Innovative Test Solutions, Inc. in Schenectady, New York. The Times Union reports that the food processor was being tested to make guacamole.

Two other people were hurt in the explosion and were taken to Ellis Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

R. Scott Briody, the Vice President and Owner of Innovative Test Solutions, Inc., released the following statement about the explosion:

A high pressure food processer experienced a catastrophic failure during trial operational tests on Wednesday, August 5, 2020 at Innovative Test Solutions, Inc. in Schenectady. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of the family members and loved ones of the three individuals involved in this tragedy.

We are deeply saddened by this loss of life. We grieve for him, his family, and the family of the other victims who were involved. Out of respect for the families, our employees, and those impacted, we will not release any additional information.

The well-being of the families and our employees is our primary concern.

Innovative Test Solutions, Inc. continues to cooperate fully with all governmental agencies who are investigating this tragedy.

R. Scott Briody VP/Owner

The incident is currently under investigation.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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