Plant Explosion Kills Two In Northwest Houston

The Watson Grinding and Manufacturing building exploded around 4 a.m. Friday – an explosion that was heard and felt miles away.

By Jill AmentJanuary 24, 2020 7:06 am,

Overnight, a manufacturing facility explosion in northwest Houston blew out windows and cracked roofs on nearby homes.

Jay Jordan is a breaking news reporter for the Houston Chronicle, and he says two people who were in the Watson Grinding and Manufacturing building on Gessner Road died in the blast. The explosion happened at 4 a.m., and he says it’s unclear what caused it and if anyone else was killed or injured.

“We’ve heard that the explosion was heard and felt miles away,” Jordan says.

He’s on the scene, and says the building appears to be “decimated.”

The chemical officials suspect may have caused the explosion was propylene, which is used to make polypropylene, a plastic material. Officials are warning people not to touch any debris in case it’s toxic, though they say the air surrounding the warehouse is safe according to tests after the blast.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Watson Grinding and Manufacturing in 2013 for wiring problems, but there haven’t been any violations since then.


Written by Caroline Covington.