Help may soon be on way for victims of deadly explosion

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Hundreds packed a church in northwest Houston Wednesday night as neighbors continue to recover from last week's deadly explosion.

City council member Amy Peck hosted a town hall meeting inside the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

"We're here for you, we're advocating for you, anything you need, please contact my office," announced Peck during the meeting.

Organizers invited anyone impacted by the Watson Grinding and Manufacturing facility explosion to come out and connect with community agencies.

Groups like the American Red Cross, Mental Health America, and Memorial Assistance Ministries showed up. They spoke one-on-one with individuals.

ABC13 spoke with Latrecia Austin, who said her husband first felt the explosion. He initially thought someone broke into her home before he witnessed his neighbors outside surveying the damage.

"My children think it's going to blow up again," said Austin. "It's been traumatizing. We just heard about the Red Cross. We're here to see."

Dueling statements released by the CEO of the company, John Watson, left damaged home and business owners in a cloud of confusion earlier this week.

Tuesday morning, Watson spoke with ABC13's Ted Oberg about the disaster via phone, saying, "I will repair all the damaged homes. My insurance company will."

The process to make claims was expected to be rolled out in the next few days, according to Watson. But by Tuesday afternoon, Watson was dialing his earlier statement back.

A written statement attributed to the CEO says, "To correct comments I made earlier today, no claims process has been established at this time. Who is at fault and who will pay for damages cannot be determined at this early stage."

READ MORE: CEO promises rebuilding help; reality harder to reach

Any person looking for help can contact District A's office at 832-393-3010.

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