Rice County officials continue to investigate explosion

ONEOK explosion (KSN Photo)

RICE COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) – An explosion at a natural gas plant in Rice County shook the surrounding area.

The explosion happened Tuesday at 9:41 p.m. at the ONEOK Hydrocarbon Plant near Bushton, which is between Hoisigton and Lindsborg on Highway 4.

Oneok Hydrocarbon Plant location
ONEOK Hydrocarbon Plant location

The blast happened in the plants records building causing a fire that completely leveled the structure. It took crews about 30 minutes to put the blaze out.

There were no injuries reported with the explosion and investigation continues as the cause of the blast is unknown.

KSN spoke to neighbors about the explosion on Wednesday.

“Big boom. Man, I come up. I was laying down, I come up out of bed. I didn’t know what the heck blew up,” said William Sidzyik, lives near plant. “I just wanted to see where it happened at exactly, what building it blew.”

Ellsworth and Rice County Sheriff’s Office and Fire, Bushton Fire, and the Holyrood Police Department and fire crews all responded to scene.

The investigation is being done by Rice County Sheriff’s Office, Rice County Emergency Management, and Rice County Fire.

“Right now, there’s an unknown cause, and that is the means of the investigation. What was the cause?” said Sheriff Bryan Evans.

ONEOK will be conducting their own internal investigation.

ONEOK Statement:

Last night, there was a fire at one of our office buildings located across the street from our Bushton, Kansas, natural gas liquids fractionator. There were no injuries as a result of the incident, and there was no impact to our fractionator operations. The cause of the incident is unknown and under investigation at this time.

We would like to thank local officials for their quick response. Safeguarding our communities and employees and the environment is a companywide commitment.”

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