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More Tests Planned To Solve West Explosion – But Not Until 2014

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Valley Mills Fire Department personnel view the railroad tracks near to the fertilizer plant that exploded. (Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

Valley Mills Fire Department personnel view the railroad tracks near to the fertilizer plant that exploded. (Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — State officials say some testing that could identify what caused the deadly explosion at a Texas fertilizer plant is not scheduled until 2014.

Assistant State Fire Marshal Kelly Kistner told lawmakers Monday that investigators still haven’t ruled out that the blast was a criminal act. But he says chances are not great that they’ll ever determine whether the electrical system at West Fertilizer Co. played a role.

The explosion in West killed 14 people and injured 200 others.

State Fire Marshal Chris Connealy also says five Texas facilities that store more than 10,000 pounds of ammonium nitrate have refused to let his office conduct an on-site inspection since the blast.

Connealy didn’t name the companies. He said they “just didn’t want the fire marshal to come on the property.”

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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