Full reopening of Houston Ship Channel unclear after fire - InfoNews

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Full reopening of Houston Ship Channel unclear after fire

The petrochemical fire at Intercontinental Terminals Company reignited as crews tried to clean out the chemicals that remained in the tanks, Friday, March 22, 2019, in Deer Park, Texas. The efforts to clean up a Texas industrial plant that burned for several days this week were hamstrung Friday by a briefly reignited fire and a breach that led to chemicals spilling into the nearby Houston Ship Channel. (Godofredo A. Vasquez/Houston Chronicle via AP)
April 01, 2019 - 10:38 AM

HOUSTON - The U.S. Coast Guard says it's unclear when the Houston Ship Channel will fully reopen as crews continue cleaning up chemicals that seeped into one of America's busiest shipping lanes following a fire at a petrochemical storage facility.

Coast Guard Capt. Rich Howes said Monday that cleanup crews are making headway and that more than 2.5 million gallons of an oily water mixture has been removed.

Part of the ship channel was closed after a fire erupted March 17 at the Intercontinental Terminals Company facility in Deer Park. The fire burned for days and triggered air quality warnings. The closed portion was reopened but only during daylight hours.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says elevated benzene levels were detected over the weekend, but that residents are not in danger.

News from © The Associated Press, 2019
The Associated Press

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