April 19, 2013 | Vol. 94, No. 92

Crews seek survivors, bodies after Texas blast

WEST, Texas (AP) — Rescuers searched the smoking remnants of a Texas farm town Thursday for survivors of a thunderous fertilizer plant explosion, gingerly checking smashed houses and apartments for anyone still trapped in debris or bodies of the dead.

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Associated Press
A smashed car sits in front of an apartment complex destroyed by an explosion at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas, as firefighters conduct a search and rescue Thursday. A massive explosion at the West Fertilizer Co. Wednesday night killed as many as 15 people and injured more than 160, officials said overnight.

Initial reports put the number of fatalities as high as 15, but later in the day, authorities backed away from any estimate and refused to elaborate. More than 160 people were hurt.

A breathtaking band of destruction extended for blocks around the West Fertilizer Co. in the small community of West. The blast shook the ground with the strengt...