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CEO walks back pledge to fix homes damaged in Houston blast

Texas
Houston Explosion

Kent Heap stands with a crumbling ceiling inside of his sister, Carol Goff’s home, as people continued to sift through their damaged homes on Bridgeland Lane in Houston, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020, after the Watson Grinding Manufacturing explosion early Friday morning. (Karen Warren/Houston Chronicle via AP)

HOUSTON (AP) — The head of a company involved in a massive explosion in Houston that killed two workers and injured 20 others has backtracked on a pledge to fix the hundreds of structures damaged by the blast.  

On Tuesday, John Watson, CEO of Watson Grinding and Manufacturing, had told KTRK-TV, “I will repair all the damaged homes.” But later Tuesday, Watson took back his pledge, saying it was premature “to make any decisions with regard to payment from this tragic incident.”

Officials say 450 structures, mostly homes, were damaged after Friday’s blast. An attorney representing residents with damaged homes and businesses says he’s disappointed Watson walked back his pledge. 

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