Yesterday, there was a
fire and explosion at two different locations in the Houston area (the fire was at the ExxonMobil Plant in Baytown). This morning around
10:00 a.m., another fire broke out at a Houston plant, this time at the
LyondellBasell plant located at Lawndale and Allen-Genoa.
While there have been no injuries reported yet, a shelter has been put
in place for nearby residents (including the 610 East Loop and Highway
225). Chávez High School, Rucker Elementary School, Deady Middle
School, and other nearby schools requested that all students stay indoors
in order to protect them from the smoke early in the morning.
Around 80 firefighters, along with the Port of Houston Fire Boat and the
Chemical Industry Mutual Aid Fire Department, helped battle the raging
fire this morning. Aerial views showed massive plumes of black smoke.
The Houston Fire Department reported cleaning fluid and heavy fuel were burning.
LyondellBasell Comments on the Heavy Fuel Fire
LyondellBasell commented that they had response crews addressing the issue,
as well as the Channelview Industry Mutual Aid and HFD on standby. They
are currently working to account for all onsite personnel while they continue
to conduct regular air quality monitoring.
"Our first priority is for the safety of our workers and the surrounding
community as well as protection of the environment," the company
commented in a statement. Earlier in the morning, nearby residents had
been instructed to remain indoors and close any windows, doors, or openings,
as well as shut off any heating / cooling systems. By 11:15 a.m., a shelter-in-place
was lifted for the affected area.
HFD and LyondellBasell are both still monitoring the air quality for the