Texas
8:00 pm
Tue May 21, 2013

Federal Agency Claims It Was Shut Out of West Investigation

The head of the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) says other government agencies are getting in the way of its investigation into the fertilizer plant explosion in West.

In a letter to U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, CSB chairman Rafael Moure-Eraso says the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives blocked CSB investigators from accessing the site for a month, and "altered or removed almost all relevant physical evidence from the site."

The letter goes on to say that the ATF and the Texas State Fire Marshals Office saw it as an exclusively criminal investigation and only wanted one version of what happened in the report. Neither of those agencies was immediately available for comment. 

Last month’s blast in the town just north of Waco claimed 15 lives.