Nearby Explosion and Rabid Skunk

Explosion photo (not the fertilizer plant in West, Texas) by Jon Sullivan. Photo released into the public domain.

First off I and my family are OK.  I was outside when it happened, about 10 to 8 p.m. local time.  We were expecting a rain storm when I heard a sound like thunder.  But unlike usual thunder it seemed to be coming from in front of me to the left and to the right.  Also unusual was that I heard the metal of the barn I was standing next to rattle.  I’ve heard windows rattle to a close lightning strike, but not a rattle when the thunder sounded far away.  The animals acted like nothing had happened.  That in itself was somewhat odd as they can react to a coming storm.

My mom who was inside her house heard it and things in the house rattled.  She said it seemed to her like an explosion.

I checked the Internet and the news, and saw nothing about it.  I thought it must just have been thunder.  I was wrong as you’ve probably learned already.  As of the last report of the fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas, hundreds may have been injured, four blocks of homes were flattened, and the death count so far is estimated at 60 to 70.  I felt and heard the explosion from more than 20 miles away.

They need blood donations.  For Texans, you can find blood donation sites at  For others in America, check your state on that site.

Strangely enough, earlier in the day I had something else odd happen.  I saw a skunk in the barn, the same barn I heard rattle later.  I was standing outside, and the skunk came out right near me which is odd for a wild skunk, especially during daytime (skunks are nocturnal).  Then it walked right up to me and started to put its front feet on my leg like it was a pet skunk.

I looked it up.  Being active during the day and acting tame and unafraid of humans are both possible signs of rabies.