Best news report is here:http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/10/texas-che...The company makes formulated chemical products by blending materials according to recipes. Their major markets are agricultural chemicals and petroleum based products including fracturing fluids.The list of materials reported by the LA Times is uninformative except for Dazomet, a soil fumigant. EPA reports http://epa.gov/oppsrrd1/REDs/factsheets/dazomet-fs.pdf"Dazomet is a non-selective soil fumigant with fungicidal, herbicidal and nematicidal properties. . . . When dazomet is applied, it is quickly broken down into several degradates; the major degradate being methyl isothiocyanate (MITC). MITC is highly volatile and is responsible for the fumigant properties of dazomet."Dazomet or other agricultural chemicals could account for the bad odors being reported.The heavy black smoke in photos implies aromatic chemicals or oil was burning. Probably not agricultural chemicals, but they could have been in storage rather than actually in use. News said it was a warehouse fire.There were reports that chemicals were mixed improperly implying a runaway reaction producing excess heat. But it is also possible that vessels being warmed overheated due to personnel and equipment failures. The result is often flammable vapors that can be ignited producing a typical flammable liquid fire.Perhaps more will eventually be revealed.
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