Explosion Injures Two at Galveston Oil Storage Terminal

The Pelican Island Storage Terminal, center right, adjacent to the Texas A&M Galveston campus (Port of Galveston file image)

Published May 19, 2020 9:23 PM by The Maritime Executive

[Brief] On Tuesday, an explosion and fire at a tank farm adjacent to the Galveston Ship Channel resulted in two injuries, according to local officials.

According to initial reports in local media, a work crew may have been conducting welding work near a tank containing heavy crude at the Pelican Island Storage Terminal. The blast and subsequent fire affected only one tank. 

Firefighting operations are currently under way, and teams from the Galveston Fire Department are using firefighting foam to suppress the flames. 

The Texas A&M University campus at Galveston - home to the state's maritime academy - is near to the Pelican Island Storage Terminal, and it briefly implemented a shelter-in-place plan to protect those on campus. The Galveston Daily News noted that over the past seven years, the university has filed more than a dozen air quality complaints with state environmental regulators about emissions emanating from the terminal.