A Plant Explosion Rocks East Texas
Posted in Plant Explosion on December 3, 2019
In the early morning hours of Wednesday, November 27th, a chemical and petroleum plant in Port Neches, Texas, exploded, where the aftershock rumbling through nearby neighborhoods caused significant property damage.
Details Regarding the Accident
Initially, the cause of the explosion was unknown, but it could be traced back to a processing unit that produces butadiene, a highly flammable, colorless gas used to make rubber, plastics, and other chemicals. This gas is also a known human carcinogen.
Since the explosion, subsequent events have occurred like an additional explosion on Wednesday afternoon, a raging fire at the site, a toppling tower the following Saturday, and a loud boom on Monday. The initial processing unit that exploded was insulated with asbestos, prompting a growing concern that the explosion spewed not only butadiene and raffinate into the air, but it may have also released asbestos fibers, all of which put the local population at risk.
The first round of air quality testing has found that no asbestos was present in the air around the explosion site, and reports from local authorities in East Texas have reported that, miraculously, no one had died in this rather large explosion, although three individuals did sustain minor injuries. The resulting aftershock from the initial explosion could be felt for miles out, shattering windows around 1 am.
A Company With a History Full of Environmental Violations
The Houston-based owners of is particular site, Texas Petroleum Chemicals (TCP Group), are no stranger to state and federal environmental violations, and they were considered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to be a high priority violator for the past two years.
Since an inspection in August of 2017, the company has failed to comply with federal clean air laws. Data collected by the State of Texas has revealed that the company has violated its government-issued permit for air pollution five times this year, also citing that hundreds of pounds of butadiene had been released.
In the last five years, the TCP Group has been fined over half a dozen times by the EPA and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality for air emissions violations that were preventable.
Again in 2017, TCP had faced a federal censure that ordered, under a consent decree, that the company pays a civil penalty totaling up to $72,187, make upgrades to various equipment, and must spend no less than $275,000 to monitor the amounts of butadiene their sites emit.
Ultimately, these consequences would add up to no more than a slap on the wrist for TCP, totaling to less than $200,000 in civil penalties for a company that generates billions in revenue per year.
Don’t Settle for Less. Be Prepared to Seek Legal Counsel.
While it may seem like the “path of least resistance” to work with TPC adjusters, you may want to rethink doing so.
On one hand, insurance claims adjusters are renown for undercutting the value of your claim. While they may seem friendly, they are ultimately at work to help save their company money by paying you less than what your claim is worth. Even if you do take this option, you are waiving your rights to compensation through a lawsuit for your personal injury or for property damages you have sustained.
Contact the De La Garza Law Firm, we can assist you with recovering temporary living expenses, property damage expenses, personal injury damages, lost wages, or business interruption damages.
Lastly, a class-action lawsuit may seem like the better option to receive the compensation you need to properly recover, but by joining one, you may be settling your claim along with hundreds of others instead of pursuing your claim individually.
That’s why you need to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney in McAllen like Rafael De la Garza of the De la Garza Law Firm. Our law firm takes pride in our years of representing hard-working Texans that have been put in danger as a result of the negligence of others.
If you or someone you know has been affected by the Port Neches, Texas explosion, contact us.
Contact us at (956) 815-0000 to schedule a FREE legal consultation today.
Source: Valley Central