Eight people have been hospitalised and 17 others had to be decontaminated after a container of chemicals exploded at a factory in Melbourne's west.
Emergency crews rushed to the factory in Laverton North about 7.30pm on Friday (AEDT) after a container refrigeration failure saw close to 2500kg of organic peroxide overheat and ignite, the Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) said.
About 25 people working at the OneSteel factory had to be decontaminated after coming into contact with the chemical, which is hazardous to skin and eyes.
'A large section of the container roof has bulged upwards due to the force of the explosion,' the MFB said in a statement early on Saturday.
Paramedics assessed those affected at the scene and took eight people to hospital for observation of their blood pressure and breathing, an Ambulance Victoria spokesman said.
None had suffered 'life-threatening' injuries, with monitoring occurring as a precaution, he told AAP.
It took 37 firefighters three hours to control the area, the MFB said in a statement.
While most of the material in the container was consumed by the fire, the rest was being cleaned up by on-site workers and placed in another container under MFB supervision, it said.
OneSteel has been contacted for comment.