Houston Chemical Plant Explosion Lawyers

There are over 600 chemical plants in the Houston metropolitan area. When a fire accident or explosion occurs, the impact to our neighborhoods can be devastating.

At Fleming, Nolen & Jez, we pride ourselves in making sure our clients are our top priority, especially those who were affected by devastating chemical plant fire accidents. We approach each case with empathy and understanding, recognizing the immense physical, emotional, and financial toll that such accidents can inflict. We aim to seek justice for those harmed and fight to hold negligent parties accountable. Through diligent investigation, 180 years of combined legal knowledge, and a compassionate approach, we work tirelessly to ensure our clients receive the compensation they deserve to help them rebuild their lives.

There are over 600 chemical plants in the Houston metropolitan area, with most located within the Houston Ship Channel. These plants produce a wide variety of chemicals, including plastics, fertilizers, and pharmaceuticals. For Houston, these chemical plants are a major economic driver for the city and they employ over 39,000 people in the area. Unfortunately, activities from these plants have caused our city to rank one of the lowest in air quality due to air pollution. These chemical plants emit a variety of pollutants, including volatile organic compounds (VOCs), nitrogen oxides (NOx), and sulfur dioxide (SO2). These pollutants can cause a variety of health problems, including respiratory problems, cancer, and heart disease. In addition, continued production keeps the greater Houston area at risk of chemical plant fire accidents and explosions every year.

Largest Chemical Companies in Houston

Chemical Plant Explosions and Fire Accidents are not Uncommon

According to the Houston Chronicle, the Houston region experiences a chemical fire every six week on average. This is dwarfed by the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) estimate of 150 “catastrophic” accidents occurring each year in regulated industrial facilities. Here are some notable chemical fires that have taken place in the greater Houston area recently:

May 5, 2023
The Shell Chemical Plant has been the site of several accidents and fires over the years. The most recent fire occurred on May 5, 2023. This caused the evacuation of thousands of people in the area, significant damage to the plant and an air quality alert for several days after the fire was extinguished. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
July 27, 2021
The chemical leak at LyondellBasell Industries caused the death of two people and injured over 30. Harris County Fire Marshal Laurie Christensen identified the chemicals as methyl iodide, hydrogen iodide, and methyl acetate — a chemical acid used in food-grade vinegar that can cause severe burns if it touches the skin, harmful if it's swallowed and very toxic if it's inhaled.
March 18, 2019
A fire at an ITC chemical plant in Deer Park caused a large plume of black smoke to rise, releasing toxic chemicals into the air. This forced the evacuation people in the area and caused significant damage to the plant, which took firefighters several days to extinguish.
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“Recent chemical plant explosions in Houston have posed significant risks to the surrounding communities. On May 5, 2023, the Shell Chemical Plant experienced a devastating fire, resulting in the evacuation of thousands of people and causing substantial damage to the facility. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation, leaving many concerned about the safety measures in place.

Before that, an incident occurred on July 27, 2021, at LyondellBasell Industries, where a chemical leak proved fatal for two individuals and left over 30 others injured. The chemicals involved were identified as methyl iodide, hydrogen iodide, and methyl acetate – substances with potential severe health hazards. The incident triggered an air quality alert, causing worry and concern among the local population.

And before that, on March 18, 2019, an alarming fire erupted at an ITC chemical plant in Deer Park, releasing toxic chemicals into the air and forcing nearby residents to evacuate. The plume of black smoke that engulfed the area raised concerns about the potential health impacts on the surrounding communities.

These recent incidents highlight the urgent need for enhanced safety measures in chemical plants and reinforce the importance of prompt and effective emergency response protocols. The well-being and safety of the residents living near these facilities must be prioritized to prevent further tragedies and protect the community from the harmful consequences of such incidents.”

Helping Victims of Chemical Plant Explosions

Seeking justice and advocating for those affected by unfortunate chemical plant fires is important to us. If you or a loved one have been a victim of a chemical plant explosion, we understand the immense physical, emotional, and financial toll it can take. Our dedicated legal team is here to support you in your pursuit of compensation in order to hold the responsible parties accountable. 

For example, in 2019, a jury awarded $100 million to a Texas worker who was injured in an explosion at a chemical plant. The worker suffered severe burns and other injuries, and was unable to return to work afterwards. 

In another case, a woman was awarded $25 million after she was exposed to toxic chemicals near a local chemical plant. The woman developed cancer as a result of the exposure, and she was unable to work.

Just recently, a worker who was injured during a multi-day fire at a Shell plant in Deer Park is actively suing the chemical company for more than $1 million.

Here are some of the damages that you may be able to recover in a chemical plant injury lawsuit:

  • Medical expenses: This includes the cost of past and future medical care, such as doctor’s visits, hospital stays, and prescription medications.
  • Lost wages: This includes the income you have lost as a result of your injuries.
  • Pain and suffering: This includes the emotional and physical pain you have experienced as a result of your injuries.
  • Property damage: This includes the cost of repairing or replacing property that was damaged in the accident.
  • Wrongful death: If your loved one was killed in a chemical plant accident, you and your family may be able to recover damages for funeral expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Do You Have a Potential Case or Question?

If you or a loved one have been the victim of a chemical plant explosion or fire in Houston, Texas, or another state within the United States, you may be able to obtain compensation for your losses and suffering. While nothing can make up for a serious medical injury or the wrongful death of a loved one, the compensation you may receive can help you deal with the tragedy and give some support to move forward with your life. Our attorneys at Fleming, Nolen and Jez will be there for you each step of the process. Contact us today to speak with a member of our team to review your case information.