1 missing after warehouse explosion shakes Houston

Houston police say they're responding to a fiery explosion at a building in northwest Houston early Friday

Houston police say they're responding to a fiery explosion at a building in northwest Houston early Friday

The force of the blast bent the metal loading doors at his business and caused minor damage inside, he told Reuters News Agency.

Numerous homes had their windows blown in.

Mike Iscovitz, a meteorologist with the local Fox News channel, said the huge blast had shown up on local weather radar and was felt more than 20 miles (32 km) away.

A massive explosion Friday leveled a warehouse in Houston, leaving at least two people dead, damaging nearby buildings and homes and rousing frightened residents from their sleep miles away, authorities said.

A criminal investigation into the blast's cause is underway, he said.

"We've assessed between 180, 190 at this point".

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People who are within a mile of the blast site should look for debris - including body parts - and report it to authorities if they see something, Acevedo said.

Acevedo said police and fire officials will conduct an arson investigation that could take several weeks, but stressed there is no current evidence of foul play.

The explosion happened about 4:30 a.m.at a building at Watson Grinding and Manufacturing, police said.

A fireball apparently rose from the scene after the blast, video posted to Twitter shows.

HFD has Hazmat is on the scene, and that one person has been taken to the hospital for an injury. Officials say they have not seen any negative readings from air quality tests.

"For me it triggered my PTSD and I thought I was back out in Afghanistan".

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Mark Brady, who lives near the site, told TV station KPRC that the explosion "knocked us all out of bed".

The explosion left an enormous pile of debris in the area between Gessner Road and Steffani Lane in Houston's Westbranch neighborhood, the station reported. It busted out every window in our house.

Police have confirmed that two people were killed in the explosion.

"I live downtown", said Pena, the fire chief, "and I felt it all the way downtown". It wasn't clear how many other people may be injured.

No formal evacuation order was immediately in place. He told CNN that one person was accounted for. We've heard from parents nearby that Dean Middle School and Bane Elementary are closed today as a result of the explosion.

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