Residents React to Loud Boom Heard Overnight, Officials Explain - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

Residents React to Loud Boom Heard Overnight, Officials Explain What Happened


By Alicia Neaves
NewsWest 9

It was the big boom felt all through our area overnight. Many people woke up to their houses shaking. It was almost like a sonic blast that scared a lot of people and lit up our Facebook page. Our very own Tom Tefertiller felt the explosion from his house and thought it was actually a "thunder sleet" because conditions were just right. But the root of the big boom came from an industrial explosion in an oilfield in Martin County, just north of Midland.

"We have tree limbs in our backyard falling down from the ice on wires so I thought those had fell. Then I ran in a room and I said, 'Daddy, please wake up. I heard a big boom. We checked the backyard and then nothing happened," viewer, Addyson Hilliard, said.

"We waited a little while, we never heard any sirens, and I told her, 'well it must not have been anything that bad. I don't hear any sirens,'" viewer Nick Hickman said. 

"We thought that somebody had actually hit our house. We went out there, it was quiet. Nothing was going on. And you know, we thought maybe an airplane had crashed or something. We just didn't know what it was," viewer, Tonya Wilson, said.

"I literally thought a car had slid off the road and hit another car or was coming through my porch. It sounded like it was right in my porch," viewer, Brandy Couch, said.

"We were kind of like, what was that? It was just kinda weird. It sounded like someone had just rammed in the side door right by the couch," viewer, Heather Nolen, said.

Between 1:45 and 2 a.m. Friday morning, hundreds of 911 calls were made wondering what it was that shook homes from Stanton to Andrews and all the way to Midland. The Martin County Sheriff's Office says it all happened 10 to 15 miles north of the city of Midland off Highway 349 in the oilfield of the Oxy Oil Company. It was an industrial explosion of a natural gas tank caused by complications with a pressure valve.  

Since the explosion did not ignite, fire crews were not needed. But emergency personnel from Midland and Martin County were there until about 6 a.m. Friday morning assessing the situation.

"Bottom line of the whole thing is just to see what we can do to prevent something like this from happening or to make sure that everyone can operate safe," Martin County Sheriff, John Woodward, said.

Sheriff Woodward also mentioned that damage was to the oilfield equipment only. We are still waiting to confirm if there were any injuries.