Today in History, April 16, 1947:
The Texas City Disaster, the worst industrial disaster in US History.
A French ship, the SS Grandcamp, loaded with 2300 tons of ammonium nitrate fertilizer in the port city of Texas City, across from Galveston, explodes in the channel leading to Houston, devastating the docks and the town.
All but one of the town’s firefighters were killed, and several other fires were ignited on other ships and in the oil town in the following days. Most of the city was destroyed, and at least 581 people were killed.