SDSU Team In Texas At Time Of Explosion
by Jill Johnson
April 18, 2013 3:55 PM
Rescue Crews continue to search for survivors in the town of West, Texas on Thursday. Officials says as many as 5 to 15 people are dead and more than 160 injured following Wednesday night's explosion at a fertilizer plant. At the time of the blast, there was a group from South Dakota in Waco, just 20 miles away.
What started as a fire at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas, turned into a mass explosion. An explosion that is said to have shaken the ground so hard, it had the magnitude of a minor earthquake, measuring 2.1 on the Richter Scale.
Boscardin said, "We were all just completely shocked and surprised to see something so big happen so close."
Oddly enough, South Dakota State University's Equestrian Team was near West, Texas at the time.
Competing in Nationals just minutes away, SDSU Senior Jenna Boscardin says the team was unaware of what had just happened.
"I, myself, didn't notice anything and either did my teammates but I think we're used to feeling a little rumble in the ground when horses go by. It's not something that we would see as being out of the ordinary at an equestrian event," said Boscardin.
Watching new reports on Wednesday night, the team saw the destruction. Dozens of homes and businesses had been destroyed, and several lives taken.
Boscardin said, "At the facility where it occurred there was just lights as far as the eye could see, I mean, every emergency that was available was seemed to be there doing whatever they could to help out."
A day later, Boscardin says EMT's were still busy. Unable to perform without an EMT there, Thursday morning, they had to wait an hour for one to get to the event before the competition could get started.
"We just have to be patient because they're dealing with such a much bigger crisis but it's definitely affected the whole area," said Boscardin.
With so much happening around them, there were no other delays. However, while competing, Boscardin says the incident and those affected will be weighing heavy on their hearts.
Boscardin said, "It's just so tragic, I mean, we just had Boston and that was already a heart break for a lot of people and having some tragedy, just a complete blast from the side, nobody would have seen something like this coming and it's really heart breaking. I think a lot of girls are just keeping that in mind today (Thursday)."
Those still missing include several firefighters who were battling a blaze at the fertilizer plant when it blew up.