13 Investigates: Fines after plant explosions as low as $13,500

Wednesday, November 8, 2023
13 Investigates: Fines after plant explosions as low as $13,500
13 Investigates found fines after recent plant explosions range from just a few thousand dollars to nearly $1 million in settlement payments.

SHEPHERD, Texas (KTRK) -- As investigators look into what caused Wednesday's fire at Sound Resource Solutions, 13 Investigates found fines for companies experiencing similar incidents range from just a few thousand dollars to nearly $1 million in settlement payments.

RELATED: Crews working to put out hotspots in Shepherd, TX plant fire that injured worker using forklift

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration issues penalties to companies for violating its standards.

In April 2019, one person was killed after a plant fire at KMCO, a chemical processing and manufacturing facility in Crosby. OSHA fined the company $131,274 for serious violations.

SEE ALSO: KMCO chemical plant fire in Crosby kills 1, injures 2

Earlier that year, investigators say a tank fire erupted at the Intercontinental Terminal Company (ITC) facility in Deer Park. The fire lasted for days. ITC agreed to pay $900,000 to settle a lawsuit with Harris County.

SEE ALSO: Leaders speak on environmental effects after ITC fire

Then, in July 2019, 66 people were injured when a tower exploded at Baytown's ExxonMobil's Olefins chemical plant. OSHA fined the company just $13,494.

SEE ALSO: Officials investigating cause of fire at ExxonMobil refinery in Baytown

In November 2019, the company TPC received $514,692 in fines for 12 violations following a plant explosion in Port Neches, where two employees and a contractor were injured.

SEE ALSO: Evacuation and curfew ordered for 4 miles around TPC plant explosion

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality also issues fines for violations of state environmental regulations, including air quality. 13 Investigates asked TCEQ for information on how much companies were fined following previous plant explosions, but did not hear back on Wednesday.

13 Investigates found Sound Resource Solutions has not had any past violations from TCEQ or OSHA.

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