"West Explosion One Year Later: Official Toll Overlooks Many Injuries"

"Focused on ERs, the official injury survey missed harms such as hearing loss and depression. Some say the omissions could skew the debate over safety regulation."

"One year later, the number of people hurt by the West explosion remains a mystery because a government survey of the injured has failed to account for scores of casualties.

Fifteen people, including a dozen first responders, died last April 17 when stores of ammonium nitrate at West Fertilizer Co. detonated during a fire. It's been estimated that more than 300 people were injured.

Government health officials were initially slow to study the extent of the West injuries. When they did, they limited their survey to those treated at hospitals and urgent care clinics. They did not canvass private medical practices, where blast victims were also treated. Nor did they track problems that may have surfaced later, such as brain injuries, hearing loss and post-traumatic stress disorder.

The Dallas Morning News, by calling a West clinic and contacting a few medical practices, found at least 40 people not included in the government’s official count."

Sue Ambrose reports for the Dallas Morning News with photography by Michael Ainsworth April 12, 2014.


"Texas Remains Wary of Regulation After West" (Dallas Morning News)

Source: Dallas Morning News, 04/14/2014