No injuries were reported Wednesday after what police initially described as an explosion at a liquefied natural gas terminal near Freeport.
Freeport LNG reported that an incident occurred around 11:40 a.m. at its facility in the 1500 block of Lamar Street at the facility on Quintana Island, according to Brazosport CAER. It’s about 70 miles south of Houston.
The Surfside Beach Police Department said the facility had experienced “some sort of explosion,” but no evacuation orders had been issued.
Important Update from member company Freeport LNG:
An incident occurred at the Freeport LNG facility on Quintana Island at about 11:40 am on June 8. An investigation is ongoing and updates will be provided soon.
At this time, CAER has no additional information. pic.twitter.com/X490VlZvzk
— Brazosport CAER (@bportCAER) June 8, 2022
All employees at the facility were accounted for, Houston-based Freeport LNG said in a statement. Shortly after 4 p.m., they declared the situation was under control and contained to the immediate affected area of the plant.
“There is no risk to the surrounding community. The incident investigation will continue,” said the company, one of the largest U.S. exporters of liquefied natural gas, or LNG.
When asked directly what type of chemical may have been released from the tanks, company officials told reporters they were not sure, and advised to ask Freeport police. Freeport police said to ask the city manager, who then told reporters he was not aware of any release.
Witnesses in the area described hearing a noise that sounded like a thunderstorm and say they saw a big fireball in the area of the plant.
Surfside Beach Police Department’s Marine Division assisted Port Freeport police and the U.S. Coast Guard on the waterways. The beaches are not closed, but Quintana Island was reportedly closed to all incoming traffic during the afternoon.