County officials ordered the evacuation of people in a 4-mile radius around TPC Group plant in Port Neches after its explosion that sent flames and smoke billowing into the sky.
That includes Port Neches, Groves, Nederland and portions of Port Arthur.
Port Neches, Groves, Nederland and a portion of Port Arthur have been ordered to evacuate Wednesday afternoon following another explosion at the TPC Group plant in Port Neches.
Three people were hurt, but no one was killed when a massive explosion rocked the plant early Wednesday morning.
Hours after the explosion, clean up began around Port Neches as residents and business owners picked up glass and boarded up windows that were smashed all over town.
Throughout the morning more booms could be heard in the area as firefighters attempted to control the blaze.
One person was transported by helicopter to a Houston hospital with burns after the initial explosion.
A mandatory evacuation has been ordered for all residents within four miles of the facility.
From about 8 a.m. through noon “The STAN,” or Southeast Texas Alerting Network, put out an alert calling for a shelter in place for all Port Arthur residents north of Highway 73.
Magnolia Avenue, or Highway 366, is closed between Nall Avenue, or Highway 365, and Spur 136. The Sabine Neches waterway has also been closed.
There are no fatalities and only three injuries.
The American Red Cross has set up a shelter at the First Baptist Church in Nederland.
Officials at the TPC Group say all of their employees are accounted for according to Branick.
One person suffered a broken arm and another has already been released from the hospital Branick said.
The TPC Group has released a statement…
“At approximately 1:00 a.m. today, Wednesday, November 27 an explosion was reported at the TPC Group Port Neches Operations site located at 2102 TX-136 Spur, Port Neches, TX 7561 involving a processing unit. TPC Group has activated its Emergency Response Plan and requested assistance from Port Neches Fire Department and Huntsman.
The event is ongoing, but will be brought under control as quickly and safely as possible.
At this time, personnel at the site have been evacuated. We have accounted for all site personnel and three personnel have sustained injuries and are being treated.
Right now our focus is on protecting the safety of responders and the public, and minimizing any impact to the environment. More information will be updated as soon as it is available.”
Officials in Orange County have called for a shelter in place in the county south of Interstate 10 until at least 6 a.m.
Residents should close windows and turn off their fans and air conditioning units according to Orange County Judge John Gothia.
Smoke plume from the #TPCRefinery fire is being blown southwest due to northeasterly winds parallel to Hwy 365 towards Port Acres, TX. Winds are forecast to continue from the northeast this evening becoming East-Northeast by the wee hours of the morning. #12NewsNowWeather pic.twitter.com/Y5F4YN7xlC— Patrick Vaughn (@PatrickVaughn4) November 27, 2019
Gothia noted the east-northeast wind direction could possibly carry a chemical plume into Orange County.
12News began receiving viewer reports of an explosion the vicinity of Texas 366 and Spur 136 in Port Arthur just after 1 a.m.
People living within a half-mile of the plant are being contacted and told to evacuate via the “911 Reach” system, the sheriff’s office said. [12NewsNow]