On March 17, 2019, a storage tank ignited at the Intercontinental Terminals Company (ITC) Deep Park facility, 15 miles southeast of Houston, Texas, which led to a plume of smoke that spread across much of the Houston area.
The cause of the ITC Deer Park plant fire remains under investigation. The storage tanks that were on fire contained chemical used to manufacture gasoline, including xylene, naphtha and toluene. Benzene has also been released into the air from the fires.
Xylene, toluene and naphtha can also cause a number of long-term health problems, including cancer, brain and central nervous system damage, and liver and kidney problems.
Common Symptoms may include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Burning, irritation and redness to skin, eyes, nose and throat
- Pregnant Women
- Individuals with certain chronic health conditions or the immunosuppressed (e.g., patients with long-term steroid use, dialysis, hepatitis, HIV/AIDS and some cancer patients)
- Individuals with respiratory diseases (e.g., asthma, COPD, emphysema, etc.)
ITC has provided claim forms on their website for both individuals and companies, but on page 5 of the claim form it states that "NO PAYMENT WILL BE MADE BY OR ON BEHALF OF ITC WITHOUT THE CLAIMANT EXECUTING A RELEASE OF ALL CLAIMS AGAINST ITC AND ITS UNDERWRITERS." This means that if you take a settlement of any kind from ITC through their claims process, you will not be able to file a lawsuit against ITC in the future for any medical conditions that may develop, including cancer and chronic respiratory distress.