Chemical Plant Explosion Rocks Port Neches, Texas


Chemical Plant Explosion Rocks Port Neches, Texas

Courtesy Atascocita Fire Dept. / Patrick Griffin


On Wednesday, a large fire broke out at a petrochemical plant in Port Neches, Texas, a hub for petchem manufacturing on the Beaumont-Sabine Pass ship channel. It is the fourth major fire at a Texas chemical facility this year. 

At about 0100 hours local time on Wednesday, an explosion occurred at the TPC Group Port Neches Operations site, about one mile south of the Port Neches Motiva liquid bulk terminal. Two plant employees and one contractor were injured in the blast and were taken to the Southeast Texas Regional Medical Center and to Memorial Hermann in Houston for treatment. All other workers were evacuated for safety, and first responders began firefight efforts. 

County officials have ordered everyone within a four mile radius to evacuate. The order covers all of Port Neches, Groves, Nederland and the northern portion of Port Arthur. To discourage looting, a 10 PM curfew has been issued for the affected area, and Gov. Greg Abbott has deployed additional police forces to augment patrols. 

Aerial video taken Wednesday afternoon showed firefighters spraying cooling water on spherical storage tanks adjacent to an ongoing fire. Further explosions occured through the afternoon. 

“What was likely the fourth explosion launched a column like a missile. If one of those columns were to launch again and land in a tank farm, it would have a more catastrophic outcome,” Jefferson County Judge Jeff Branick told local media. 

Incredible aerials of the fire at the TPC plant in Port Neches. Everyone within a 4-mile radius of the plant is asked to evacuate. STORY |

According to TPC, the first blast occurred in the facility’s south processing unit at a tank containing the gas butadiene, an intermediate chemical used for making synthetic materials like neoprene, nitrile rubber and ABS plastic. It is flammable, explosive and carcinogenic, but it dissipates and degrades rapidly in the environment. 

The blast broke windows in surrounding parts of Port Neches. TPC says that it is working with its insurer to establish a claims processing hotline for area residents who were affected by the fire. Law firm Provost Humphreys has already filed a class-action lawsuit against TPC on behalf of the plant’s neighbors, alleging that the explosion damaged commercial and residential property.

Atascocita Fire Dept. 

Atascocita Fire Dept. 

The TPC Port Neches facility produces about 900 million pounds of butadiene and raffinate per year. It delivers its goods to market by pipeline, barge, rail and tank car. According to reporting by the Texas Tribune, the plant has been out of compliance with federal clean air laws since 2017 and is considered by the U.S. EPA to be a high priority violator. 

The blast comes one week after the EPA rolled back a set of chemical plant risk analysis requirements known as the Chemical Disaster Rule. If it had been implemented, the regulation would have required plant managers to conduct advance coordination with first responders, carry out near-miss and root-cause analyses, and increase the public’s access to disaster planning information. 

TPC is privately held. In 2017, it posted revenue of $1.5 billion, and prior to the plant damage, it said that it expects to expand production when the new wave of Gulf Coast ethylene plants increases its feedstock supply. 

Leave a Reply

SSCP   CAS-002   9L0-066   350-050   642-999   220-801   74-678   642-732   400-051   ICGB   c2010-652   70-413   101-400   220-902   350-080   210-260   70-246   1Z0-144   3002   AWS-SYSOPS   70-347   PEGACPBA71V1   220-901   70-534   LX0-104   070-461   HP0-S42   1Z0-061   000-105   70-486   70-177   N10-006   500-260   640-692   70-980   CISM   VCP550   70-532   200-101   000-080   PR000041   2V0-621   70-411   352-001   70-480   70-461   ICBB   000-089   70-410   350-029   1Z0-060   2V0-620   210-065   70-463   70-483   CRISC   MB6-703   1z0-808   220-802   ITILFND   1Z0-804   LX0-103   MB2-704   210-060   101   200-310   640-911   200-120   EX300   300-209   1Z0-803   350-001   400-201   9L0-012   70-488   JN0-102   640-916   70-270   100-101   MB5-705   JK0-022   350-060   300-320   1z0-434   350-018   400-101   350-030   000-106   ADM-201   300-135   300-208   EX200   PMP   NSE4   1Z0-051   c2010-657   C_TFIN52_66   300-115   70-417   9A0-385   70-243   300-075   70-487   NS0-157   MB2-707   70-533   CAP   OG0-093   M70-101   300-070   102-400   JN0-360   SY0-401   000-017   300-206   CCA-500   70-412   2V0-621D   70-178   810-403   70-462   OG0-091   1V0-601   200-355   000-104   700-501   70-346   CISSP   300-101   1Y0-201   200-125  , 200-125  , 100-105  , 100-105  , CISM   NS0-157   350-018  , NS0-157   ICBB  , N10-006 test  , 350-050   70-534   70-178   220-802   102-400   000-106   70-411  , 400-101   100-101  , NS0-157   1Z0-803   200-125  , 210-060   400-201   350-050   C_TFIN52_66  , JN0-102  , 200-355   JN0-360   70-411   350-018  , 70-412   350-030   640-916   000-105   100-105  , 70-270  , 70-462   300-070  , 300-070   642-999   101-400   PR000041   200-101  , 350-030   300-070  , 70-270  , 400-051   200-120   70-178   9L0-012   70-487   LX0-103   100-105  ,