Paradis pipeline explosion: Evacuation lifted; one worker still unaccounted for; one still in the hospital

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ST. CHARLES PARISH, La. (WGNO) – The Philips 66 pipeline that exploded last night in Paradis continues to burn as officials continue the search for a missing worker and concerned residents are begin to return to their homes.

At an 11 a.m. press conference, St. Charles Parish President Larry Cochran said the evacuation order for residents near the Paradis station has been lifted.

Louisiana State Police spokesperson Melissa Matey said police will be checking drivers licenses on Highway 361 to ensure only residents are allowed back in.

Todd Denton, Midstream Operations General Manager for Phillip 66, said air monitoring of the surrounding area shows no health impact from the fire, which he said is burning down now as the pipeline’s supply of raw natural gas liquids continues to dwindle.

Workers are attempting to place another clamp closer to the source of the fire to further reduce the amount of fuel left to burn.

Six people were at the small pipeline station at the time of the explosion, which Denton described as very small.

“There’s really not much to it,” Denton said.

Three of the workers present were contract workers, and three were employees of Phillips 66. One of the contract workers remains in the hospital, while a Phillips 66 employee is still missing.

Stay tuned to WGNO for more information as this situation continues to develop.