Obama: Administration ready to help in Waco plant explosion

{mosads}”Today our prayers go out to the people of West, Texas, in the aftermath of last night’s deadly explosion at a fertilizer plant. A tight-knit community has been shaken, and good, hard-working people have lost their lives,” Obama said in a statement Thursday morning. “I want to thank the first responders who worked tirelessly through the night to contain the situation and treat the wounded. 

“My Administration, through FEMA and other agencies, is in close contact with our state and local partners on the ground to make sure there are no unmet needs as search and rescue and response operations continue. West is a town that many Texans hold near and dear to their hearts, and as residents continue to respond to this tragedy, they will have the support of the American people.”

The explosion happened late Wednesday night and more than 10 people are estimated to have died because of the blast.

Obama’s statement echoed similar sympathetic comments made by a number of Texas lawmakers.

Rep. Bill Flores (R-Texas), the congressman for the district that includes Waco and the surrounding area, said congressional leaders he had talked to have promised to extend any assistance necessary.

“We’re ready for the call. We’re working with the offices of Sen. [John] Cornyn [R-Texas], Sen. [Ted] Cruz [R-Texas]. We’ve contacted the governor’s office and said ‘as soon as you make the call, let us know,’” said Flores Thursday on “CBS This Morning.”

During a flight to Boston on Thursday, Obama called Texas Gov. Rick Perry to say that “his prayers are with the people of West, Texas, as they respond to the explosion last night,” according to a pool report.

— This story was updated at 10:54 a.m.

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