Maria Guerrero

Contractor Injured When Storage Tank at Asphalt Plant Explodes

An explosion at an asphalt plant has rocked the city of Ennis for the second time since February.

A contractor was hospitalized Monday afternoon after falling when a storage tank exploded into flames at the U.S. Polyco Plant along I-45.

The victim, a man in his 30s, was taken to Parkland Hospital in Dallas with a serious injuries to his leg.

The man is a contractor from R Tex Services in Cleburne.

He and a crew were working to demolish an asphalt tank that was damaged by an explosion in February.

This was the first day on the job.

The Ennis Fire Department says the crew was using a cutting torch that somehow caused another tank to explode at about 12:15 p.m.

The victim then fell about 30 feet into the previously damaged tank.

Firefighters arrived to heavy smoke and flames, but managed to cut open a hole in the tank and rescued the worker.

The Ennis Fire Marshal says they do not believe the February explosion is related to today’s explosion.

The explosion in early February was reportedly caused when a storage tank burst a valve.

A loud boom was felt several miles away.

OSHA is still investigating the February explosion and will be called about today’s incident, according to the Fire Marshal.

Fire Marshal Chad Wester says the contractors had the necessary permits to do the work today and as of right now Wester believes the explosion was due to “operator error.”

Wester says there is no concern for neighboring businesses or homes.

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