TX Chem Plant Blast Kills 1, Injures 3

Tuesday, January 19, 2016 @ 05:01 PM gHale

An explosion at a Houston-area chemical plant killed one worker and injured three others, officials said.

The tank accident happened January 16 at 12:45 p.m. at the PeroxyChem Bayport Plant in Pasadena, TX, Pasadena police said.

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A statement from Philadelphia-based PeroxyChem said the workers were doing a routine function when the contractor’s equipment exploded.

The contractor died at the scene. Two PeroxyChem employees and another contractor ended up rushed to the hospital where police said one worker has a broken arm, while the other two were undergoing treatment for exposure.

The tank blast led to a spill of about 1,000 gallons of an oil-based cleaning solution, said Pasadena police spokesman Vance Mitchell. The company didn’t immediately identify the chemical or release names of the victims.

“Plant employees and contractors were conducting a routine function when the contractor’s equipment exploded,” spokeswoman Natalie Kay said. “The site’s emergency response plan was implemented. The emergency situation is contained. Current activities are focused on ensuring the safe and secure state of the plant and its employees.”

According to PeroxyChem’s webpage, the company employs 550 people and manufactures hydrogen peroxide, calcium peroxide, persulfates and peracetic acid and other products for electronics, energy, environmental, food safety, pulp, paper, polymer, and other industrial and consumer markets.

David Brannon, with the Pasadena Fire Marshal’s Office, said the explosion was the result of an over-pressurized tank.

PeroxyChem said the accident at the plant 10 miles east of Houston, is under investigation.