1 missing after explosion and fire at a chemical plant in Texas

NBC    
   INFERNO An explosion and large fire at a North Texas chemical plant on Thursday morning

NBC INFERNO An explosion and large fire at a North Texas chemical plant on Thursday morning

One worker is unaccounted for and two others have been injured after an explosion at a chemical plant in Texas, according to ABC News.

An explosion and massive fire erupted at a chemical plant southwest of Fort Worth, Texas, on Thursday morning, March 15.

The 27-year-old has been missing since the fire was first reported, at about 9.45 am.

12 people were in the area when the explosion happened and two were sent to the hospital with injuries.

"Things were blowing out of the roof, like metal lids on buckets", said Jesse Bailey, who was working next door to the plant when the blast occurred.

At this point, crews are planning to let the fire burn out. "Then, the fire. It smells like sulfur".

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He later told NBC that dragging the foot could have caused static electricity and started the fire, but said the cause won't be clear until investigators have had time to go onto the scene once the fire is completely out.

The area is now closed to traffic, and the chemical plant and a nearby lumber yard have been evacuated.

Cresson mayor Bob Cornett said that seven fire departments were battling the fire, but firefighters had to pull back from the scene due to the risk of additional explosions.

Cornett told The Associated Press that Tri-Chem Industries mixes chemicals that are primarily used by the oil and gas industry to drill disposal wells. They also saw fireballs shooting out of the building. After the flames calmed, crews entered the wreckage for another search for Mitchell but found nothing and ended for the night, Cornett said late Thursday.

In recent years, Texas leaders have made it increasingly hard for the public to find out about the chemicals manufactured and stored at such plants.

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