NewsCalcasieu Parish

Actions

UPDATE: Fire at Westlake chemical plant smoldering, shelter in place for residents within one mile

Westlake Chemical fire.PNG
Posted at 10:34 AM, Aug 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-27 22:22:14-04

WESTLAKE, La. — UPDATE (9;20 p.m.): Crews now have the fire at BioLab smoldering, according to KPLC.

Louisiana State Police Trooper Derek Senegal confirmed that crews are spraying water on the leak to dilute the chemical and keep it from reacting.

A precautionary shelter in place continues within one mile of the plant, and I-10 is still shut down as a precautionary measure.

LDEQ crews are at the site and have begun air monitoring, reports KPLC.

------------------------------

Louisiana State Police confirm that their Emergency Services Unit (ESU) technicians are working a hazardous material incident involving a chlorine leak originating from the BioLab chemical manufacturing facility in Westlake.

I-10 in southwest Louisiana has remained closed overnight due to the effects of Hurricane Laura and emergency personnel utilizing the interstate system are being diverted off of I-10 around the incident location.

Residents in the area are being advised to shelter in place.

Citizens should not be engaging in unnecessary travel at this time.

LSP ESU personnel are coordinating with plant managers to contain the leak. Citizens should follow emergency orders from local officials and updates will be posted to LSP social media accounts as available.

The company that owns the plant that caught fire in Westlake, KIK Custom Products, has released a statement on the incident:

KIK Custom Products confirmed that, as a result of damage sustained during Hurricane Laura, there is currently a fire at one plant located at the company's Biolab Lake Charles, LA facility. Our priority is the safety and well-being of the Lake Charles community of which we are a part. We are deploying a specialized team to the site, and we are working with first responders, local authorities, and environmental agencies to contain and mitigate the impact of this incident as quickly as possible. The facility had been evacuated when the hurricane was upgraded to category 4 after following shut-down protocols, and all employees are confirmed to be safe at this time. We will provide additional information as it becomes available.
Spokesperson for KIK Custom Products

ORIGINAL STORY:

Officials are saying that a fire has started at chemical plant in Westlake Thursday following Hurricane Laura, according to KPLC.

Louisiana State Police confirm they responding to the scene near Mile Marker 26 and motorists are advised not to travel on I-10 through Westlake.

Traffic on I-10 is being diverted to I-210.

A shelter in place order has been given for Westlake and Sulphur and residents are advised to turn off their air conditioning units.

Residents in Westlake/Moss Bluff/Sulphur area are advised to shelter in place until further notice and close their doors and windows and turn off your air conditioning units.

The Isle of Capri Casino has also reportedly broken free and is now stuck underneath the Calcasieu River Bridge.

KATC's Chris Welty is on the ground in Lake Charles and is reporting a second fire in the area. KATC is working to confirm if they are connected.

You can read more from KPLC here.

------------------------------------------------------------
Stay in touch with us anytime, anywhere.

To reach the newsroom or report a typo/correction, click HERE.

Download our free app for Apple, Android, Roku and Amazon devices.

Sign up for newsletters emailed to your inbox. Select from these options: Breaking News, Evening News Headlines, Latest COVID-19 Headlines, Morning News Headlines, Special Offers

Alexa's Daily Flash Briefing

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Instagram

Subscribe to our Youtube channel