Blast rocks ExxonMobil’s Beaumont plant, burning contract workers

Blast rocks ExxonMobil’s Beaumont plant, burning contract workers

Twelve workers at ExxonMobil’s Beaumont plant were injured when an explosion rocked the facility about 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, April 17.

According to Beaumont Fire Department spokesman Brad Penisson, three of the 12 workers were critically injured and sustained severe burns as a result of the fire.

All were transported to local hospitals by ambulances — at least 10 of which could be seen entering and exiting the ExxonMobil facility about 11 a.m.

“The cause is under investigation, but it was a processing area that was down for maintenance and it was contained quickly and has been extinguished,” said Exxon Mobile spokeswoman Kathleen Jackson minutes after the blaze was put out.

Jackson said the workers were contract workers and the facility’s fire crew and other employees have all been accounted for.

While answering questions from reporters on the scene, Jackson said she did not know the cause of the fire.

“We will conduct a complete investigation to determine the cause of the incident,” she said.

Jackson went on to say fire and explosions are few at the plant.

“We have a very excellent safety record,” she said. “Incidents like this are rare.”