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Posts published in “Day: November 23, 2017”

County files lawsuit against Arkema for emissions release

FLECKS OF WHITE DEBRIS IN THE AIR FROM THE SEPT. 2 EXPLOSION INDICATES SUBSTANCES BLOWN INTO THE AIR AFTER THE TRAILERS WERE IGNITED FOR A CONTROL EXPLOSION.

HARRIS COUNTY – County Attorney Vince Ryan has filed a lawsuit against Arkema Inc. Ryan indicated that the county would “seek the highest penalties possible for what happened and hopefully work with them to make sure that it never happens again.”

Shortly after Hurricane Harvey, the organic peroxides stored at the Arkema plant were going to explode after the plant was flooded, lost power, generators flooded, and backup generators were little more elevated than the regular generators, so they were knocked out by water, too.

In an effort to mitigate the fallout from the impending explosions, Arkema employees informed authorities of the situation. The National Guard cleared everyone in a 1.5-mile radius from the area. From there, first responders remained on the perimeter of the plant, and when the organic peroxide did begin to explode, the first responders got sick, with some collapsing in the road from exposure to invisible fumes.

Within a week of the incident, a couple dozen of first responders filed a lawsuit in Harris County District Court, and others living nearby joined.

Harris County Commissioners Court approved plans to file a lawsuit in civil court against Arkema for creating a public nuisance and keeping first responders that were needed elsewhere occupied dealing with the Crosby plant.

For local residents, there was nowhere to find out what potentially the air quality would be from the explosions. Arkema had indicated to state authorities that 11 contaminants had been released. Later it was learned that isobutylene was about 40 yards from six of the trailers that were designated to blowup creating a potentially catastrophic situation that locals were not told about.

Authorities thought that a contingency plan other than calling the local fire department seems reasonable for a plant operating inside the flood plan that had changed since 2007.

Arkema Inc. officials stated, “Many of your conclusions fail to recognize that Hurricane Harvey was unlike any rain event Houston has ever experienced.”

The county’s suit will contend it was common knowledge for a week or more before the storm hit that Harris County could get as much as 50 inches of rain from Harvey.

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Jacinto City’s new swimming pool underway for 2018 opening

CONSTRUCTION PROGRESSES ON THE NEW JACINTO CITY PUBLIC SWIMMING POOL.
(PHOTO BY ALLAN JAMAIL)

By Allan Jamail

Jacinto City, TX. – Monday, November 20, 2017 – Jacinto City residents will be enjoying a new pool when the 2018 swim season begins, after not having a swimming pool for the last two summers because the old pool became unusable. The old pool floated up out of the ground severely damaging the pool structure and adjoining concrete apron surrounding the pool along with the water lines.

City Manager Lon Squyres after an extensive cost analysis to repair the damaged pool determined in the long term interest of the city it would be best to demolished the old pool and replace it with a new modern pool.

Squyres said, “The pool will be ready to open in the early spring and while we have not set the weekly schedule yet we would like to have it open prior to Memorial Day weekend.”

The new pool will have an irregular shape and is slightly larger than the old pool. The pools deepest part will be 5 feet and it’ll contain 111,255 gallons along with a splash pad. Parents will have shaded seating areas when watching their children.

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WALLE, GARCIA SEEK GREEN’S SEAT

Congressman Gene Green announces retirement

NORTHEAST – Several U. S. Congressmen have announced their retirement from Congress at the end of their terms, in December 2018, including local Representatives Gene Green and Ted Poe. As a result, others have hastened to announce to voters that they will run for these seats. For Texas District 29, held by Green, State Senator Sylvia Garcia, and State Representative Armando Walle have said they will campaign for this position. They will compete for votes in the Democratic primary election in March 2018.

Both Walle and Garcia have districts and constituents that overlay Green’s District 29, so voters will be very familiar with the candidates.

In announcing his retirement, Congressman Green released the following statement on his decision to not seek reelection:

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Galena Park ISD host annual Veterans Day Luncheon

As part of a week dedicated to honoring those who have served or are serving our nation, Galena Park ISD hosted its annual Veterans Day Luncheon on November 10. More than 150 veterans and their family members attended and were honored by the North Shore Senior High School’s choir performance which included the theme song from each military branch and finished with the Star Spangled Banner.

GPISD would like to thank all of the veterans and family members who attended the Veterans Day Luncheon. Pictured is Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Angi Williams, with Marine Corps veterans.