Report: Hundreds Seek Medical Help After Houston Chemical Plant Fire

The U.S. Coast Guard banned traffic along part of the Houston Ship Channel on Saturday as the fallout continued from a blaze at a chemical storage facility that reportedly released hazardous fumes into the air and toxic chemicals into the water. About 1,000 people sought medical treatment after suffering headaches, nausea, and other symptoms in the wake of the fire at Intercontinental Terminals Co. facility in Deer Park, according to Bloomberg. The fire was extinguished on March 20 but reignited on Friday, with the collapse of a containment wall sending toxic chemicals and a plume of benzene over the water. While the channel does not provide drinking water for Houston residents, Coast Guard Capt. Kevin Oditt told reporters the benzene could be a threat to ship crews on the channel. Several parks in the area also reportedly closed down after the fire flared up again. With many residents reportedly complaining of health problems after the chemical disaster, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said this weekend that he would file a lawsuit against ITC over violations of the Texas Clean Air Act.