Published October 18, 2007 04:15 am - http://www.panews.com/local/local_story_291041530.html - Officials from Union Carbine/Dow Chemical Pipeline have stopped the flow of material in a pipeline that ruptured and caught fire just before 2 a.m. Thursday near the intersection of U.S. 69 and 60th Street. The pipeline continued to burn at about 8:30 a.m.
Related story: Explosion rocks Port Arthur, with locator map - http://www.panews.com/local/local_story_291035407.html
10:30 a.m. UPDATE: Product flow stopped
The Port Arthur News
Officials from Union Carbine/Dow Chemical Pipeline have stopped the flow of crude butadiene and ethylene in a pipeline that ruptured and caught fire just before 2 a.m. Thursday near the intersection of U.S. 69 and 60th Street. The pipeline continued to burn at midmorning.
The shelter-in-place advisory is still in effect, Deputy Fire Chief John Avery said at 10:30 a.m. Thursday.
Butadiene is created in the steam cracking process of breaking hydrocarbons into other products, including ethylene, according to Wickipedia.org. Most butadiene is used to produce synthetic rubber. It is also used to make nylon. Ethylene is also a product of hydrocarbon distillation and is considered a building block chemical for many other chemical products. Both chemical are extremely flammable and exposure can cause a variety of symptoms.
Port Arthur Police blocked all traffic around the perimeter of the burning pipeline. Traffic on U.S. 69 is blocked from Texas 73 to Jimmy Johnson Boulevard. All roads between Ninth Avenue and U.S. 69 in the affected area are blocked.
Heavy black smoke could be seen coming from the area about 8:30 a.m, hanging low to the ground and blowing toward the northeast. The plume reached past Twin City Highway and created a haze over the Huntsman facility on FM 366 and Hogaboom Road near Groves.
The Port Arthur Police Department is encouraging all residents living around U.S. 69 and 60th Street to shelter in place. The call was ordered early Thurdsay after air quality readings taken in the Stonegate area indicated high levels of Hydrogen sulfide. Hydrogen sulfide is colorless and should not be inhaled for long periods of time.
PAPD said residents living between U.S. 69 and Twin City Highway should heed the shelter in place order until further notified.
For more information, call PAPD at 983-8600.