WEST (April 18, 2013)—Rescuers were conducting another door-to-door search early Thursday for the living and the dead in areas damaged by a massive fertilizer plant explosion in West that left more than 100 injured and may have killed dozens.
As of 4:45, officials say five to fifteen people are believed to be dead.
Six firefighters and two paramedics are confirmed dead and seven nursing home residents were missing after the blast according to West EMS Director Dr. George Smith, who said earlier Wednesday night as many as 60 or 70 people may have died in the blast.
One police officer was also still reporting missing.
Smith said early Thursday morning he expects more bodies will be found during the search of damaged and destroyed homes.
He said a city official was also missing.
Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton confirmed there were deaths, but said during a news conference early Thursday he did not know how many, reiterating a statement by Department of Public Safety spokesman D.L. Wilson, who said during a news conference late Wednesday night the number of dead is unknown.
“We do have confirmed fatalities,” Wilson said.
“It’s going to be a number.”