Corpus Christi Grain Elevator Explosion

In 1981 there was a horrible grain elevator explosion in Corpus Christi near docks. At the time I was working at CPL, which the building was on Lipan just west of Port Avenue, behind the Chevrolet car dealership. The force of the explosion rocked whole area over there, but many people didn't know what was going on until news started reporting on it. Windows were blown out, some homes got cracks from force of blast on the north side of I-37. Our old crappy house my mom & dad (& late brother Tommy) were living in on Doss & Antelope got one cracked window. But that sort of blended in with other cracked windows.

Sadly a number of people lost lives. I had heard a story about one man who was blown 500 yards away from near top of one silo, and landed in marsh, and SURVIVED. A number of new safety regulators came about due to this explosion. This is some old 1981 footage from aftermath Ron Fulton reporting, I think was with KIII TV down there at time.

The grain elevators could be seen from our old house if we walked up hill on I-37. Lots of smoke, and the elevators were on the flatlands that road that used to, probably still does, behind harbor bridge on west side, and would wind thru plants and what not, and end up going over the old lift bridge, so you would come out on Up River Road. The 'back bay road' (which is what a number of us called it, sort of misleading as not bay) but is a extension of Navigation Road. Too bad they got rid of the old lift bridge, was fun to park and watch ship go under it in 1960s/70s.

As for the grain elevators, I do not know if they ever rebuilt them.Ironically, last time I was down in Corpus Christi, I drove on Navigation on 'the dark side' of Harbor Bridge, so across from Whataburger Field, we saw a rabbit in marsh grass, and waved at bunch of sailors coming in on big ship.You can walk into the river here, lots of oyster shells, don't go too far as drops off with vengeance. I told my wife to flash them & scream 'Welcome To Corpus Christi!!' which she didn't do, our kids with us. If you want a neat, quiet solitary place to go watch the big ships come in, there is small inlet there next to where the huge windmills are made. This is the old film about explosion on youtube. You will probably remember the reporter too.

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