Early Friday morning, an explosion and fire ripped through an offshore energy platform in the Gulf of Mexico owned by Houston-based Black Elk Energy LLC. Initial reports suggested that the explosion occurred when maintenance workers were using a torch to cut into a pipe with 28 gallons of oil inside. United States Coast Guard Captain Ed Cubanski said that approximately 22 workers were onboard the platform at the time of the accident.
A fire at BP's Texas City refinery broke out today at 1:30 p.m. Officials with the Texas City Office of Emergency Management were alerted to this hydrocarbon fire shortly after 1:40 p.m. and BP fire crews were called to the scene. No calls for further assistance have been made.
Last Wednesday, a jury awarded a Colorado man $7.2 million in damages for developing a chronic condition known as popcorn lung from a chemical used in flavoring microwave popcorn. Wayne Watson, a 59-year-old native from Denver, filed suit in a U.S. District Court. Mr. Watson proved that the downstate Illinois popcorn manufacturer and the supermarket chain that sold it were negligent by failing to warn that the butter flavoring, diacetyl, was dangerous.