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Lightning strike caused explosion; facility destroyed
FAYETTE COUNTY, Texas Officials with Fayette County Sheriff's Office were the scene of a tank fire near La Grange on Saturday.
Officials said lightning struck one of five combustible containers at the La Grange Salt Water Disposal Plant around 6:30 a.m., causing it to explode. The blast triggered fires in the remaining four containers.
It took firefighters an hour to get the fire contained and under control.
Ralph Burris, owner of the plant, said that when wells produce oil, they also produce salt water. The salt water is injected into a well so it can be returned to the area from where it is released.
These types of facilities exist because the Railroad Commission of Texas says the salt water must be disposed of in a way that won't pollute other water. Fiberglass tanks are used as containers.
Officials said the facility, located 50 miles southeast of Austin, was a total loss.
This story comes to us through our partnership with KHOU News.