Massive plumes of black smoke billowed from a raging fire at a chemical plant south of Dallas today, prompting evacuations for some schools and residents and sending others to take shelter inside with doors and windows shut to avoid possible exposure to any dangerous gases. Bright orange flames engulfed the Magnablend Chemical Plant facility in Waxahachie, about 30 miles south of Dallas. Images from local television stations showed the fast-moving blaze consuming a fire truck as firefighters worked nearby.
No injuries have been reported since the fire was first called in about 10:40am, according to Waxahachie police. Authorities ordered residents closest to the plant to evacuate, while others were advised to stay inside. The Ellis County Office of Emergency Management issued an alert asking residents of an apartment complex near the plant, along with anyone at Wedgeworth Elementary School and Navarro College's Waxahachie campus to immediately evacuate. (Read more fire stories.)