CONROE, Texas – A fire ignited by a series of explosions at an oil field chemical supply firm north of Houston on Friday has been brought under control.
Firefighters took about two hours to bring the fire under control at the DrillChem plant on the eastern fringe of Conroe, about 40 miles north of Houston.
The explosions and fire erupted about 4:30 p.m. Friday, sending a broad, dense column of thick, black smoke towering into the otherwise blue skies, making it visible for miles.
There were no immediate reports of injuries.
Units from several fire departments and a hazardous-materials team were at the scene Friday. Residents up to 2 miles from the fire site have been told to remain indoors, The Courier reported.
Wayne Patterson, a resident who lives less than a mile from the facility, had just stepped from his back door with his dogs when he "saw a huge cloud of black smoke," he said told the newspaper.
"The last explosion ... we heard about three or four, but the last one shook the house," he said.
Patterson added that he received a text message requesting to turn his air conditioning off. His son, who lives about a half-mile away from the explosion site, drove to Patterson's house to seek shelter.
"Our eyes were burning. It's not too bad, but they are burning," he said.