Two workers were injured, one critically, Tuesday night in a chemical explosion at the Pennzoil-Quaker State refinery in Shreveport, La.
The plant was shut down after the explosion and the fire was under control in less than two hours.
Police Sgt. J.J. Roberts said flames were "shooting up so high an airplane could have landed on them. It scared me."
Thomas Brown, 45, was admitted to the burn unit of LSU Hospital-Shreveport. He has worked at the plant for 18 years. Further details on his condition were not immediately available.
Ray Scrippa, the company's Houston-based spokesman, said 35 people were working at the plant at the time of the blast. He could not say when operations would resume.
The explosion and subsequent fire was reported around 7:10 p.m. Tuesday and happened in a naphtha unifining area.
Naphtha boils off in between gasoline and kerosene during distillation. It has many uses, including as an ingredient of gasoline and dry cleaning fluids.
Residents in the surrounding area were startled when their houses shook from the explosion.
However, Pennzoil-Quaker State's human resources manager said the community is in no danger from the explosion.