A few months ago, a massive explosion shook Houston residents awake in the wee hours of the morning. On January 24 at around 4:30am, a building at the Watson Grinding and Manufacturing facility suddenly exploded, leveling the entire warehouse. The shockwaves from the blast could be felt miles away, and at least two lives were lost in the incident.
A Massive Explosion Leaves Houston’s Community Shaken
The explosion at the Watson facility reduced one building to nothing but rubble and damaged several others in the area. Watson is in the business of manufacturing valves and thermal-spray coatings for equipment in various industries. Fire investigators traced the origin of the blast to a propylene tank that had been leaking. In addition to being flammable and explosive, the colorless gas is highly toxic. Exposure to propylene can cause dizziness, light-headedness, and liver damage.
The event was devastating for the factory and surrounding communities. In fact, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo recommended that residents occupying homes located near the business search around their home for debris and body parts that could help officials investigate the cause of the explosion. Police deployed cadaver dogs to search for evidence of additional fatalities, and the property damage resulting from the blast was substantial.
Commercial Explosions Cause Serious Damage
Police and fire officials informed around 300 residents in the surrounding area that they should shelter in place, and many homes suffered substantial damage. Windows were broken and debris was found more than a quarter mile away from the explosion. Over 200 homes were damaged, and some were even knocked from their foundations from the blast. About 50 houses were completely destroyed, leaving families suddenly homeless in the middle of the night.
Watson Grinding and Manufacturing has been cooperating in the investigation, and police have not found any evidence that the blast was intentional. Police investigating the event do not suspect any foul play, but the lack of criminal activity does not imply that no one is to blame. Negligence has not been ruled out as a contributing factor to the damage.
If you are among the hundreds of families affected by the Watson explosion, contact a local attorney right away. As skilled and experienced litigators, the attorneys at Williams Hart & Boundas are among the best. Call us today for a free consultation and we can talk about how to make sure you are fairly compensated for the damages you have suffered.