A large explosion at an apparent industrial building in Houston early Friday was felt for miles away, left rubble scattered in the area and damaged nearby homes.
The Houston Fire Department said one person was taken to a hospital because of the blast.
The explosion shook other buildings about 4:30 am (local time), with reports on Twitter of a boom felt across the city. A fire burned following the explosion smoke was seen hanging over the area.
The explosion appeared to be centered on an industrial building and some nearby homes were damaged.
Houston police tweeted that they were responding and officers were blocking off streets in the area.
As the fire burned, a firefighter asked a KTRK-TV reporter to move away because of potential hazards.
“(The explosion) knocked us all out of our bed, it was so strong,” said resident Mark Brady. “It busted out every window in our house. It busted everybody’s garage door in around here … and closer toward the explosion over here, it busted people’s roofs in and walls in and we don’t know what it is … It’s a warzone over here.”
Brady said the explosion was extremely loud and he has never experienced anything like it before. “This is a disaster,” Brady said. “This is a big disaster. I really don’t know what happened … Houston we could use your prayers.”
Another area resident, Kim, said she woke up to the roof falling on her. “The whole house is ruined,” Kim said. “The whole ceiling crashed down on all of us. We were all trapped in there and a nice family came and helped up out. Ut’s trashed. It’s just trashed.”
According to Kim, firefighters told her it was a gas explosion at a nearby business. She said that she and her family have minor injuries. “Every house was devastated,” Kim said.
The Houston Fire Department shared a tweet that said one person was transported to a hospital. The extent of that person’s injuries are unknown.
Firefighters have asked people in the area to walk away from some of the more heavily damaged homes as the work to assess the damage and determine if the buildings are safe to enter.
According to Meteorologist with the Harris County Flood Control District, Jeff Lindner, the explosion was so strong it was caught on radar.
(With inputs from PTI)