Explosion shakes Phillips plant near Houstongreenspun.com : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread
Explosion shakes Phillips plant near Houston A plume of smoke rose Monday from the site of the explosion at the Phillips Petroleum Co. chemical plant in Pasadena, Texas March 27, 2000 Web posted at: 3:57 p.m. EST (2057 GMT)
PASADENA, Texas (AP) -- An explosion Monday rocked a Phillips Petroleum plant near the Houston Ship Channel, causing an undetermined number of injuries and sending a large column of smoke into the air.
Workers in neighboring plants and area residents were urged to remain indoors while officials tried to determine what material was burning. Children in area schools were kept inside after the bell rang for the day.
"The plume appears to be moving upwards," city spokesman David Benson said. "But in case the wind shifts we'd like people in a safe place
-- Martin Thompson (email@example.com), March 27, 2000
More info on explosion. Phillips plant explodes Authorities battling flames from Houston petroleum works; children being kept indoors March 27, 2000: 4:21 p.m. ET
PASADENA, Texas (CNN) - Orange flames and black smoke were boiling up Monday afternoon after an explosion at a Phillips Petroleum chemical plant near Houston. Phillips officials said there were injuries but had no further details. A spokesman for the Pasadena Police said the explosion occurred in a "resin unit" of the plant. Houston fire officials said that the refinery's internal fire crew was fighting the blaze. Deer Park fire officials said they sent one truck and two ambulances to the plant. Sgt. J.M. Baird, a spokesman for the Pasadena Police Department, said the explosion occurred at 1:23 p.m. at the plant, which sits in an industrial area near the northern border of this Harris County suburb with the Houston shipping channel. About 130,000 people live in Pasadena, which also borders Houston. People are injured, but Baird said he had no idea how many, or whether any of the injured live in homes less than a mile from State Highway 225, which has been closed down. "What caused this explosion is of no concern to us right now. Our concern is protecting the people, making sure no one else gets hurt," Baird said. Several area police and fire departments are assisting the refinery's internal fire department, Baird said. Police are telling residents to remain indoors with windows and doors closed. One construction crew nearby was evacuated. A resident who lives about three miles from the refinery said she heard an explosion and saw a tall column of black smoke rising above the facility in the Deer Park area of the city. Residents in the area were told to close their windows to avoid the smoke. School children were being kept in their schools to allow the smoke to clear. Phillips spokesman Ed Grigsby told reporters that an explosion had occurred at the plant, but that he had no other details. The Phillips complex was the site of an Oct. 23, 1989 series of explosions and fires in a polyethylene reactor that killed 23 and injured 130 in one of the region's worst industrial calamities. Last June two people were killed and four were injured in an explosion at the complex that also damaged the K-resin plant. K-resin is a clear plastic used in drinking cups, food containers and other items. Phillips was fined $204,000 by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration for 13 alleged safety and health violations in the wake of the June 23 explosion and fire.
-- Martin Thompson (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 27, 2000.
Tuesday, March 28, 2000 Cause unknown in blast PASADENA, Texas (AP) Authorities have turned their attention to finding the cause of a deadly blast at a Phillips Petroleum chemical plant, the third major explosion at the factory in the past 11 years.
Authorities have turned their attention to finding the cause of a deadly blast at the Phillips Petroleum chemical plant in Pasadena, Texas, near Houston.
Associated Press One worker was killed and at least 71 others injured in Monday's explosion near the Houston Ship Channel. An ensuing fire sent thick smoke over the area. "I was in the main shop area when I heard a loud explosion," said Tim Williams, a plant worker who estimated he was more than 200 yards from the explosion. "My ears hurt, and I took off running. I looked back and saw flames, and kept going." Search crews discovered the body of a missing employee five hours after the early afternoon blast. Plant general manager Jim Ross said 32 employees and 39 contract employees were taken to hospitals with injuries that included burns, smoke inhalation and anxiety- related disorders. Spokesman Norm Berkley said the plant employs about 850 people, and said about 600 would have been there at the time of the blast. Workers in neighboring plants and residents in the area were urged to remain indoors while schoolchildren were kept inside after the bell rang. Smoke continued to rise two hours after the blast, and was clearly was visible across Houston. The Phillips complex was the site of a 1989 series of explosions and fires in a polyethylene reactor that killed 23 and injured 130. Last June, two people were killed and four were injured in an explosion at the complex. Afterward, federal officials fined Phillips $204,000 for 13 alleged safety violations. "We have worked tremendously hard to make sure a situation like that never, ever occurred again," Berkley said. "Obviously, it has.
-- Martin Thompson (email@example.com), March 28, 2000.