Officials probe ammonium nitrate-filled rail car near Texas plant; force of deadly blast shocks community

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When the fertilizer plant exploded in West, Texas last night “it was like a small nuke,” said a senior Obama administration about the force of the explosion and the damage it caused.

Although exact fatality numbers haven’t been released by authorities in Texas, the administration official said there are fears that the death toll could be much higher than the 15 people speculated about since the explosion took place.

Authorities suspect the blast was set off by a rail car holding a large quantity of ammonia nitrate that somehow caught fire or blew up. The Obama offical told The Post that investigators are now trying to determine whether the ammonia nitrate-carrying train was on the fertilizer plant’s property or on an adjacent site.

That question is critical, the official said, because the plant does not list ammonium nitrate as a chemical that it handles under the plant’s emergency plan on…

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