La Porte blast heard from miles away; no danger to the public

A loud explosion at a La Porte gas plant Wednesday shook homes and rattled nerves as far away as Baytown and Sheldon. Linde Gas issued a statement saying the blast was caused by a line breach at the plant at 11603 Strang Road.

LA PORTE, Texas -- A loud explosion at a La Porte gas plant Wednesday shook homes and rattled nerves as far away as Baytown and Sheldon. 

Linde Gas issued a statement saying the blast was caused by a line breach at the plant at 11603 Strang Road.

"The plant was shut down and has been secured.  The release of gases has been stopped, and there is no risk to the surrounding community," the statement said. "All employees have been accounted for and there are no injuries."

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Police say some people were treated at the scene for ear pain and dizziness.

A shelter-in-place wasn't necessary, according to the Office of Emergency Management.

The explosion rocked Daniel Kricak's house across the channel in Baytown.

"It shook a whole lot," Kricak said. 

He heard a loud boom – then two smaller ones around 11:15 a.m.

"A big explosion. It rumbled and rumbled," Kricak said. "I'm surprised there was no fire."


Linde makes chemicals including chlorine, propylene, ammonia and copper and zinc compounds.

According to the EPA, the plant has not been in compliance with the Clean Air Act since 2015.
Since 2009, the plant has been given $100,000 in fines from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Some of those are for emissions and pollution violations.
Just last year, Linde settled a water violation for $20,000. It stemmed from the plant discharging chemicals for nearly six months in 2015.

 

© 2018 KHOU-TV


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