A gas explosion caused a large fire and resulted in two deaths in Northwest Houston. The accident occurred at an industrial plant and the two men killed reportedly worked at the site. The huge blast was felt miles away and some homes were moved off their foundations. Additional damage and injuries were reported in the nearby communities. At least one person was transported to the hospital and 18 people reported to the hospitals with injuries related to the blast. Injuries included breathing issues and minor cuts and bruises.
The explosion occurred early in the morning hours and only two employees were at the building, likely to work out in the gym. The blast caused significant damage to homes and businesses in the nearby area. Debris could be found as far away as two miles. The explosion and fire flattened a large building on the industrial site. The company does not manufacture chemicals, but they use them in their operations. The Houston Fire Department HazMat crews shut off valves to the chemicals before they could fight the fire.
How Dangerous are Industrial Plants?
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), is a law enforcement agency part of the U.S. Department of Justice. The ATF brought in their National Response Team of experts to evaluate the site and determine the cause of the blast. The team includes certified explosive specialists, certified fire investigators, forensic chemists, mappers, K-9 units, and a group of interviewers. Firefighters went to about 200 homes in the immediate area to make sure that the residents were not hurt.
Over the last 20 years, there were about 1,018 people injured and 235 people killed in pipeline accidents similar to this incident. The law requires companies that manufacture potentially dangerous chemicals to inform the public. However, companies that use or store chemicals as part of their manufacturing process are only required to inform employees, not the public. The incident raises questions about how safe the community is from explosions such as this. The plant was operating in the same location since 1972 and the community built up around it since then.
Residents and others may feel safe in their homes and neighborhoods. Here, the damage was reported on hundreds of homes within miles of the blast site. Mayor Turner stated that the city will evaluate and assess the incident and try to mitigate the risk of future explosions when possible. If you were hurt or experienced damages due to an explosion, the company is likely responsible for your expenses. You might be entitled to compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering and more. You can also seek compensation for the repairs to your home. Do not work in a dangerous plant to get hurt by an explosion or fire. If you or a loved one was injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be owed money. Contact our legal team at Baumgartner Law Firm to learn how we can help you get the money you deserve for your injuries.