On Wednesday night, a fire broke out in the West Fertilizer Factory (Texas). Half an hour later, there was a first explosion of 2.1 magnitude, according to the seismographs of the U.S. Geological Service.
This factory stored 24.5 tons of ammonia. The blast devastated 50 to 60 houses in a five-block radius and forced the evacuation of half of the 2,800 inhabitants of the town, south of Dallas. The cause of the fire has not been determined yet while the number of missing, dead and injured continues to grow.
The rain this morning helped to quell the fires and clean the air in the area. However, it was feared that toxic gases were dispersed in the area.
More than 700 police officers, paramedics, firefighters and volunteers arrived to West from last night, and this morning they were searching for survivors in the rubble of collapsed houses and buildings. More than 133 patients from the West Rest Haven residence for the Elderly (500 meters away from the factory), were evacuatedfrom the site as soon as the fire started.