Gov. Perry declares state of emergency after blast in West, TX - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Gov. Perry declares state of emergency after blast in West, TX

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Governor Rick Perry has declared a state of emergency in McLennan County and announced Thursday that multiple state agencies are responding to the area.

State officials have said that resources would be deployed in West as long as needed, but with a massive disaster like this one, the state is relying on federal aid as well.

"Last night was truly a nightmare scenario for that community," Perry said.

Surrounded by fellow state officials, Governor Perry spoke Thursday about the widespread impact of the explosion in West.

"This tragedy has most likely hit every family, it's touched practically everyone in that town," Perry said.

Emergency responders from all over the state have been deployed from members of the Texas National Guard to DPS Troopers. Texas Task Force One and Two, the highly trained search and rescue crews, arrived within hours of the blast.

TCEQ personnel are on scene monitoring air quality.

"Throughout the night there were state agencies on the ground to assist that will remain there as long as requested and needed," said Perry.

He says in a phone call, President Obama indicated he would sign a Federal Emergency declaration.

"President Obama called from Air Force One as he was en route to Boston and we greatly appreciate his call and his gracious offer of support of course," said Perry.

While the governor says he has been updated on casualties from the explosion, he's not ready to release those numbers.

"I'm not comfortable giving you a number right now and I think that's appropriate. Until the families are notified of casualties, I think it's appropriate for us to allow the search and rescue effort to go forward," said Perry.

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