NBC News and msnbc.com
"MONT BELVIEU, Texas — Explosions and fire ripped through a Houston-area natural-gas processing plant, leaving one person unaccounted for Tuesday afternoon, officials said.
Explosions were heard about 12:15 p.m. at Enterprise Products on Sun Oil Road in Mont Belvieu, about 35 miles east of Houston, NBC station KPRC reported."...
..."Mont Belvieu is a major natural gas storage and processing hub sitting atop a salt dome formation. The natural gas industry stores more volatile hydrocarbons there than anywhere else in the world, NBC News said. The area is like an egg-shaped mound on the coastal prairie.
The nearby community of Barbers Hill, with population 200, was bought out by the industry during the 1990s after a series of explosions at Warren Petroleum.
NBC News cited geologists with the Texas Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas saying salt dome storage poses three risks: A pipeline or well may leak and cause an explosion; toxic chemicals stored in the domes could leak into local water supplies; or land and aquifers may be contaminated by salt water left from carving and refilling the caverns." More>>>>