Was the ATF wrong when it cited arson in Texas fertilizer plant explosion?

  • Source: Houston Chronicle
  • Published: 08/02/2017 12:00 AM

When the ATF held a press conference in West, Texas more than a year ago to announce a big finding in the 2013 fertilizer plant explosion, there was a lot riding on it. Hundreds of lawsuits had been filed against the fertilizer manufacturer. Much further reaching, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency was working on a rewrite of one of two major sets of federal rules governing chemical plant safety. So when ATF Special Agent in Charge Robert Elder declared the deadly blast, which leveled much of the town and exposed gaping holes in chemical storage and processing regulations, an act of arson, the plaintiffs' lawyers weren't the only ones getting nervous.


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