Massive Explosion at Texas Chemical Plant Felt Miles Away, Damages Nearby Homes

A massive explosion rocked a chemical plant that produces petroleum products in southeast Texas overnight, sending fireballs into the air. The shockwave of the blast has damaged walls in nearby homes and even shattered windows miles away, according to early reports on social media, but the cause of the blast is still unknown.


The initial explosion occurred in Port Neches, Texas, near the Louisiana border, shortly after 1:00 am local time on Wednesday. People living within a half-mile have been advised by the local fire department to evacuate and residents south of the I-10 freeway are being told to shelter in place until at least 6:00 am because the wind is carrying a chemical plume.

There are at least three injuries so far but thankfully no fatalities, according to local ABC news station 12 News Now. Early reports indicate that the explosion was felt as far as 40 miles away.

Twitter users have been posting videos of the fire, as well as damage to their homes. The fire was still raging as of 5:00 am local time, 6:00 am ET.


People have also posted Nest and Ring camera footage of the explosion to YouTube.

Gif: YouTube

Security camera footage also shows that the explosion caused buildings to shake from the initial blast.

The refinery is owned by TPC Group, which has reportedly accounted for all of its employees.


If it feels like there have been a lot of chemical plant explosions recently, it’s not your imagination. A chemical plant exploded in Houston in May of 2018, a chemical plant in Deer Park, Texas exploded in March of 2019, a chemical plant in Crosby, Texas exploded in April of 2019, an oil refinery in Philadelphia exploded in June of 2019, and an Exxon-owned chemical plant in Houston exploded in July of 2019.

This is a developing story...


Matt Novak is the editor of Gizmodo's Paleofuture blog


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