WESTLAKE, LA (KPLC) - The way it looked, it probably stopped a few hearts in the Westlake area, since many have family members who work there. But no injuries were reported from a fire at Phillips 66 Monday.
From KPLC's SkyCam you could see the tower of smoke. It billowed into the sky for several minutes. Video provided by a viewer on Interstate 10 at ground level showed flames and black smoke.
As a safety precaution, both Phillips 66 employees and contract workers were evacuated from the area, but allowed to return within the hour.
Calcasieu Emergency Director Dick Gremillion arrived at the scene soon after it started.
"They were bringing a unit down and a fire occurred," Gremillion said. "It was quickly extinguished. It did make a lot of black smoke. A lot of people were concerned about it but there is no offsite impact. The workers were brought - this is a normal safety routine that they do - workers were brought out so they could do an accountability on them, make sure they had everyone accounted for. And they completed that and they've all gone back into the plant now."
Westlake Police Chief Chris Wilrye says at no time were nearby residents in danger.
"Our concern is for our citizens of the community of Westlake and to make sure there was no impact to the community and
there was no evacuation that needed to be taken place outside of Phillips 66 property," he said. "From speaking with the people here at Phillips 66 there's no danger to the community."
Phillips 66 officials say they are still investigating the cause of the fire. They say the fire was reported to all the appropriate agencies as required and that the refinery is operating.
Phillips 66 has released a statement following a fire at the plant Monday afternoon.