HAMPTON, La. (KTVE/KARD) – The explosion took place right here at the Arkansas Gravel Company, and although everything is going back to normal, and families are going back home, Sheriff Morris says they are currently completing this repair and getting new pipes into place.
“Of course, human safety, we got that part taken under control. Now the main thing is getting the pipeline back up and back into production.” Says Sheriff Morris.
Although the pressure of the ammonia released from the punctured pipeline into the air has already been reduced, Sheriff Morris says recovery from the damage may take some time, that’s why several different agencies will be called in to assist.
“IDEQ, The Game and Fish, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, everyone has been contacted, so. The ponds with the fishes are gonna be pretty extensive it looks like” Says Sheriff Morris.
A local Hampton resident tells me he was never notified to evacuate.
“Woke up in a ghost town. they’re like why didn’t you get evacuated, i said i did not know anything, stuff like that usually doesn’t happen around here.” Says Will.
“Everything should be marked out so you know where they are digging at. That stuff is still in the air.” He says.
However – other residents in the area did receive a warning to evacuate. About 200 people left and have since returned. The sheriff says the community will have to get through this together.
“My home is right in the very middle of it. I got a little smell in it. Open your doors and windows, turn the fan on, and let the air get in and clear it out.” Morris says.
“These things happen in our community and we’re just gonna have to get through it.”
Sheriff Morris says these new pipes that are currently being installed, have followed the required inspections, and it’s expected to be completed within the next 24 hours.