One Confirmed Death In Delek Refinery Explosion

POSTED: Friday, November 21, 2008 - 7:12pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 - 11:59am

TYLER - We have confirmed one person has died from Thursday's explosion at a Tyler refinery.

That explosion took place at the Delek refinery on McMurrey Drive in Tyler just before 2 o'clock in the afternoon.

Just one day after the explosion in the Saturates Gas Plant at the Delek refinery, production remains at a halt.

Officials tell us, they're working to figure out why the explosion took place.

They're also working with employees.

In that blast, four workers were injured.

One was quickly released.

And as of Friday morning, one of them, 49-year-old Dale Sharman died.

In a written statement, the plant's manager says this, "We are deeply saddened by the loss of our friend and colleague. Our thoughts and prayers remain with the family."

Those thoughts and prayers went outside the refinery fence, and into Steve's Barber Shop.

Robert Williams says, "I prayed and asked God to bless them, cause it's a situation that could be very dangerous."

Robert is the "Shoe Shine Man" at Steve's.

John Ward cuts hair.

Both of them tell us, the explosion is the talk of the shop.

Robert says, "Through this shop, we meet lots of people who work out there."

And knowing what took place at the refinery Thursday, doesn't sit well.

John says, "I feel sorry for the people who work there, for the families involved and the workers who were hurt."

At this point, officials tell us, the company that owns the Tyler refinery, Delek, is conducting its own investigation.

They say quote, "In the days and weeks ahead, we will be working to identify the cause and origin of the incident."

Federal officials are also investigating.

They tell us, it could take up to 6 months to complete their investigation.

This isn't the first time federal authorities have had to investigate the Delek refinery.

Since February of this year, KETK found at least 20 serious safety violations reported there.

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