BELLVILLE — Nearly 50 fire departments, law enforcement and various other public safety departments answered the call for mutual aid when a gas plant exploded Tuesday (July 17, 2018) morning in Bellville.

With emergency response units coming from as far away as Columbus and College Station, Cypress’ bravest were among those answering the call.
The Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department sent Tanker 12 to assist units with tanker-shuttle operations in Bellville.

Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department’s Tanker 12 assisting units on scene with tanker-shuttle operations at the plant fire in the Western International Gas Company, located at 7173 HWY 159 in Bellville, on July 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy CFVFD Deputy Chief Zach Maher)

The Western International Gas Company, located at 7173 HWY 159 in Bellville, and nearby residents contacted the Austin County Sheriff’s Office at 6:09 a.m. to report an explosion and fire in the gas plant.
The event initially triggered a one-mile radius evacuation. The evacuation zone was later extended to five miles.
“At mid-morning, fire personnel had the fire under control and all was well,” according to a Austin County Sheriff Office press release. “At late morning, the fire flared up with more explosions and all persons evacuated the fire scene. Fire personnel then decided it would be safe to let the fire burn itself out and extend the evacuation radius to five miles. Sheriff’s Deputies, with help of other law enforcement agencies, evacuated residents within a five mile radius of the gas plant. Later that day, fire personnel were able to return to the fire scene and control the fire. At that time, the evacuation radius was reduced to one mile. At approximately 6:00 p.m. the one mile evacuation radius was cancelled and all residents were allowed to return home.”
The press release states the fire was out at approximately 10 p.m. Also, no injuries occurred.

Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department’s Tanker 12 assisting units on scene with tanker-shuttle operations at the plant fire in the Western International Gas Company, located at 7173 HWY 159 in Bellville, on July 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy CFVFD Deputy Chief Zach Maher)