The Karnes City and Kenedy Volunteer Fire Departments responded to the scene of the fire on Friday afternoon, March 28, at about 1 p.m. Sheriff’s department deputies and Karnes County EMS personnel were also sent to the scene.
At the request of BHP Billiton, the fire departments stayed on standby at a safe distance while the fire gradually burned itself out.
The cause of the fire is undetermined, Karnes City Fire Chief Charlie Malik said. There was some concern initially that a battery of about 12 tanks nearby at the site might have become involved in the fire.
Malik said the fluids in the tank that ignited were likely a mixture of crude oil, distillates and saltwater, which can be a highly flammable mixture that can be ignited with a single spark.
See video of the fire at mySouTex.com.