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Published On: Thu, Apr 18th, 2013

Texas explosion results in missing firefighters, looting, ‘school’s gone apartment’s gone’ says witness

Search and rescue teams in Texas are looking for survivors and missing people amid buildings where walls and roofs have been torn away and other buildings have been flattened by an explosion at a fertilizer plant. Firefighters are among the missing and authorities fear that five to 15 people could be dead.

“We have confirmed fatalities at this time. We don’t have the exact amount,” Texas Department of Public Safety Sgt. Jason Reys said at a news conference this afternoon.

The explosion devastated the area that officials described as a highly-populated neighborhood.

“It ranges from broken windows to complete devastation,” Waco Police Department Sgt. William Swanton said at a news conference today. “There are homes that are no longer homes.”

(story continued below)

Texas fertilizer plant explosion resulted in a mushroom cloud of smoke photo screenshot of ABC News coverage

Texas fertilizer plant explosion resulted in a mushroom cloud of smoke photo screenshot of ABC News coverage

“The school’s gone, the apartments are gone,” resident Sammy Chavez, wearing a blood-soaked t-shirt, told reporters. He was sitting in his truck watching the fire when the sudden, ear-shattering blast sent shards of glass spinning through the air. “It’s just horrible.”

Other residents of the town of 2,700 ran from their homes after the blast filled the sky with a massive fireball around 8 p.m. local time on Wednesday.

The explosion devastated the area that officials described as a highly-populated neighborhood.

“It ranges from broken windows to complete devastation,” Waco Police Department Sgt. William Swanton said at a news conference today. “There are homes that are no longer homes.”

At some buildings, “walls were ripped off, roofs were peeled back,” the sergeant said.

Swanton said the five to 15 deaths is a “rough number” and they are unverified.

“I don’t have a number of how many they have rescued or how many potential bodies they have found,” he said.

“There are still firefighters missing,” Swanton said.

 

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About the Author

- Catherine "Kaye" Wonderhouse, a proud descendant of the Wunderhaus family is the Colorado Correspondent who will add more coverage, interviews and reports from this midwest area.

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  1. President Obama America will recover together from the Texas plant explosion TRANSCRIPT - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] the first lady at the Ferrell Center in Waco, site of a memorial service Thursday for some of the people killed in a fertilizer plant explosion last week in the nearby town of […]

  2. Emergency workers Cyrus Reed, Jerry Chapman, Perry Calvin identified as victims of Texas plant explosion - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] have begun identifying the victims of last week’s massive fertilizer explosion in West, Texas, and the majority of men killed in the catastrophe were local rescue […]

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