HOUSTON – Another fire at a Texas chemical plant Tuesday sent plumes of black smoke into the air, killing one worker and injuring at least two others, authorities said.
This is the second major blaze at a Houston-area chemical facility in about two weeks.
Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez confirmed the fatality in a tweet and said the two injured had been taken by helicopter to a hospital.
Sheriff Gonzalez also tweeted this update recently.
Crosby Plant Fire: What I know-a transfer line ignited in the area of a tank with Isobutylene and the tank caught on fire. An adjacent storage building with solid goods also caught fire. Trying to contain it. #HouNews
— Ed Gonzalez (@SheriffEd_HCSO) April 2, 2019
All residents within a one-mile radius of the plant were ordered to stay indoors or shelter in place. Surrounding school districts have asked students and staff to shelter in place at all their campuses as well.
A plant employee said the plant exploded as about 20 workers were leaving. He said the employees had to crawl under a gate because the gate was locked.
John C. Foley, CEO of KMCO, said in a statement that the company had activated its emergency response team and set up a command center.
“We are working with local first responders to extinguish the fire,” Foley said.
KMCO is a chemical company that offers coolant and brake fluid products and chemicals for the oilfield industry.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said that it has dispatched emergency response personnel to conduct an initial assessment of the fire.
This fire comes about two weeks after a March 17 blaze at a petrochemical storage facility in Deer Park, just about 20 miles south of Crosby where the second blaze started. That earlier fire burned for days and triggered air quality warnings.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)