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Rail Tanker Explosion at BASF Plant in Freeport, TX

Posted on 09/13/2002 8:02:33 AM PDT by i_dont_chat

TV stations in Houston, TX, are reporting a large explosion in a BASF facility in Freeport, TX. Reports are coming out that a tanker car has exploded and a building housing tanker cars has been leveled.


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: basf; explosion; freeporttx

1 posted on 09/13/2002 8:02:33 AM PDT by i_dont_chat
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To: i_dont_chat
Explosion Rocks Freeport Chemical Plant
Witnesses Say Homes Shook
Posted: 9:53 a.m. CDT September 13, 2002
Updated: 10:02 a.m. CDT September 13, 2002
FREEPORT, Texas -- An explosion rocked a chemical plant in Brazoria County.

Plant Explosion

The explosion happened shortly before 9:30 a.m. at the BASF Corp., 602 Copper Road, in Freeport.

Witnesses told News2Houston that the explosion shook their homes and that they could see a large plume of black smoke coming from the plant.

For more information on this breaking story, stay tuned to News2Houston and Click2Houston.com.


2 posted on 09/13/2002 8:06:26 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
(...red alert?) (hold on?)
3 posted on 09/13/2002 8:08:08 AM PDT by Frank_Discussion
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To: i_dont_chat
I'm used the the chemical plants and refineries having problems, but I don't know anything about this plant. Watching the local news right now, but they don't have any pictures yet.
4 posted on 09/13/2002 8:11:22 AM PDT by Aggie Mama
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To: Aggie Mama

Shelter-In-Place Order

Emergency crews issued a shelter-in-place order for nearby residents.

When a shelter-in-place is issued, nearby residents should:

For more information on this breaking story, stay tuned to News2Houston and Click2Houston.com.

5 posted on 09/13/2002 8:13:39 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Sounds serious. Hope everyone in area stays safe.
6 posted on 09/13/2002 8:15:26 AM PDT by Iwentsouth
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To: Iwentsouth
Getting helicopter cameras in now. It looks like a HUGE explosion. Several holding tanks are destroyed and a fire truck is crushed and on fire. At least a football field size of charred and burning metal.
7 posted on 09/13/2002 8:17:52 AM PDT by Aggie Mama
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

8 posted on 09/13/2002 8:19:47 AM PDT by Jeff Head
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To: Aggie Mama
Darn, and it will not be covered because of the Florida highway situation.
9 posted on 09/13/2002 8:19:52 AM PDT by Conservababe
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To: Conservobabe
MSNBC has this story now.
10 posted on 09/13/2002 8:21:26 AM PDT by Hillarys Gate Cult
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To: Conservobabe
Is Florida highway situation a diversion? decoy?
11 posted on 09/13/2002 8:22:29 AM PDT by Republican Babe
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To: Republican Babe
Neither. Chemical plants have fires and explosions... they just do...
12 posted on 09/13/2002 8:25:13 AM PDT by Solson
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To: i_dont_chat
I wonder if this could be linked to the 300lbs of
ammonium nitrate that was stolen from Austin powder
a few days ago.
13 posted on 09/13/2002 8:25:15 AM PDT by Tazman70
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To: Tazman70
No, they found that.
14 posted on 09/13/2002 8:25:55 AM PDT by Aggie Mama
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To: Aggie Mama
I didnt know that thanks for the udate.
15 posted on 09/13/2002 8:26:47 AM PDT by Tazman70
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To: Aggie Mama
I think they just said the plant is an ammonia plant. Very bad. Those fumes are so toxic especially to young and elderly.
16 posted on 09/13/2002 8:28:09 AM PDT by Aggie Mama
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To: Tazman70
No problem. =)
17 posted on 09/13/2002 8:28:27 AM PDT by Aggie Mama
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Thanks! CNN and FOX are still focused on the cars on the Freeway!

sw

18 posted on 09/13/2002 8:28:45 AM PDT by spectre
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To: i_dont_chat
"Don't worry. Everything's under control. This is not an act of terrorism. Nothing to see here. Move along."
19 posted on 09/13/2002 8:30:07 AM PDT by brewcrew
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20 posted on 09/13/2002 8:30:51 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: i_dont_chat
At BASF we done make things, we just make them blow up.
21 posted on 09/13/2002 8:31:54 AM PDT by abishai
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To: brewcrew
"Don't worry. Everything's under control. This is not an act of terrorism. Nothing to see here. Move along."

No it's a terrorist attack on a plant that makes componenets for tires and pantyhose!

BTW No injuries ... well other than to a few nuts of Free Republic. Now YOU move along ......... geeeeezzzz

22 posted on 09/13/2002 8:35:29 AM PDT by HoustonCurmudgeon
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To: abishai
LOL!
23 posted on 09/13/2002 8:36:59 AM PDT by RedWhiteBlue
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To: i_dont_chat
It appears to me that this is not an act of terrorist, but an industrial accident which is not uncommon to this area.

Freeport, Texas, is a major chemical complex, and the people there are accustomed to accidental fires and explosions.

24 posted on 09/13/2002 8:42:35 AM PDT by i_dont_chat
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To: HoustonCurmudgeon
"Don't worry. Everything's under control. This is not an act of terrorism. Nothing to see here. Move along."

Apparently the quotation marks I used didn't have the desired effect. They were meant to convey my sarcasm and the lack of trust I have developed in things Federal.

Please accept my humblest apologies for failing to get my meaning across.

25 posted on 09/13/2002 8:42:41 AM PDT by brewcrew
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To: i_dont_chat
Explosion reported in Freeport
By S.K. BARDWELL
Copyright 2002 Houston Chronicle

Officials are responding to reports of an explosion near a south Brazoria County chemical plant.

An ammonia railcar apparently exploded near the BASF chemical plant along Highway 332 in Freeport, Freeport police reported.

Highway 332 and parts of other roads nearby are reportedly closed to traffic.

The explosion, which occurred about 9:30 a.m., could be felt for miles away, according to residents.

The BASF production plant, 602 Copper Road in Freeport, has been evacuated, according to workers.

Officials have ordered the plants in the area locked down because of air quality concerns. Reports also indicate that residents along Slaughter Road are being told to stay inside their homes because of the air quality.

Emergency officials are checking wind direction to see which, if any, residential areas could be affected by the blast. For now, residents are being asked to "shelter in place," which means stay indoors.

Charlotte Zwahr said she lives 20 miles from the BASF plant, and heard and felt the explosion. Minutes later, Zwahr said, her husband, a driver for Service Transport who was inside the plant at the time of the explosion, called to say the plant was being evacuated.

Zwahr said a cloud of white smoke was seen over the plant first, then the explosion occurred, and then clouds of black smoke appeared.

Clute police officers said they were deluged with reports of the explosion from area residents who believed it came from the BASF plant, but had not yet been able to reach anyone at the plant.

Some residents said they believed a tank car on a nearby railroad track may have been the source of the explosion.

It is unknown whether anyone has been injured.

More to come as it is available.
26 posted on 09/13/2002 8:44:24 AM PDT by sonsofliberty2000
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This story reminds me of:


27 posted on 09/13/2002 8:45:17 AM PDT by Constitution Day
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
When a shelter-in-place is issued, nearby residents should:

Go inside
Shut all doors and windows
Turn off air conditioners and heaters to prevent outside air from getting inside
Turn on the radio to listen for instructions
Stay off the phone

I've always wondered why they tell us to turn off the air conditioner. Don't ACs simply re-circulate the inside air throughout the house? They don't draw air in from the outside.

Side note: Does anybody know any reason why your hot water heater should not be used as an emergency supply of drinking water?

28 posted on 09/13/2002 8:46:28 AM PDT by scan59
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To: Aggie Mama
When/where did they find Austin's missing nitrates? I haven't been able to stay up to date on this.
29 posted on 09/13/2002 8:49:27 AM PDT by the_doc
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To: scan59
Because drinking from the hot water heater would cause series burns on your mouth and throat?
30 posted on 09/13/2002 8:49:37 AM PDT by abishai
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To: brewcrew
In that case my apologies for a smart a$$ answer. ;-)
31 posted on 09/13/2002 8:49:55 AM PDT by HoustonCurmudgeon
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To: brewcrew
Your comment had the desired effect on most of us -- I always say the exact thing to my husband...

You did forget "Go out and buy a car" though. :)

32 posted on 09/13/2002 8:50:37 AM PDT by RightFin
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To: RightFin
You are absolutely correct, ma'am.

"Now run along and go buy a car or a computer. Help restore your country's economy. Buy some stock. Or a refrigerator. Or a lawn mower. Go do anything else. You just can't stay here because this incident is not in any way related to terrorism or people of middle-eastern descent."

33 posted on 09/13/2002 8:58:38 AM PDT by brewcrew
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To: i_dont_chat
They seem to be having problems with freight trains colliding and danger of explosions in Germany, too. I think two trains collided head-on and a tank car with the highly poisonous gas Epichlorhydrin exploded or is in danger of exploding.

Giftgas-Alarm am Bahnhof

13. September 2002 Norddeutschland

Güterzüge stießen zusammen - Explosionsgefahr

Bad Münder - Die Unglücksstelle am Bahnhof von Bad Münder ist am Tag nach dem Unfall mit Schaum bedeckt. Am Rand des weißen Teppichs stehen Feuerwehrleute und warten. Warten, ob es noch gefährlich wird. "Es besteht immer noch Explosionsgefahr", sagt Feuerwehrsprecher Jörg Grabandt. Mehr als zwölf Stunden ist es her, dass hier zwei Güterzüge frontal zusammengestoßen sind - und die niedersächsische Kleinstadt nahe Hameln nur knapp einer Katastrophe entging.

Ein Kesselwagen mit der hoch giftigen Chemikalie Epichlorhydrin war explodiert.

34 posted on 09/13/2002 9:00:58 AM PDT by syriacus
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To: the_doc
Quoting from the Houston Chronicle this morning.

Man Arrested In Stolen Fertilizer Investigation

Georgetown (30 miles north of Austin, TX) -- Williamson County sheriff's officials on Thursday arrested a man in connection with the theft of part of 330 pounds of potentially explosive fertilizer reported missing from a Georgetown company.

Bryon David, 24, of Georgetown remained in the Williamson County Jail Thursday evening on a state felony charge of burglary of a buildling. His bond was set at $30,000 said Wendy Denson, sheriff's spokeswoman.

David admitted stealing a 30-pound tube of ammonium nitrate from Austin Powder Co. and dumping the fertilizer at the Williamson County landfill after media coverage of the theft made him nervous, Denson said.

Authorities investigated David's story and he passed a lie-detector test, Denson said. He was not an Austin Powder employee.

"We are confident that that's all he took," Denson said.

The investigation led authorities to believe hat other 300 pounds, or 10 tubes, reported missing was a bookkeeping error made by the company and not actually missing, Denson said.

The tube David said he threw in the landfill has been destroyed, she said.

(The article gives more information -- are you interested?)

35 posted on 09/13/2002 9:16:41 AM PDT by i_dont_chat
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To: syriacus
war explodiert doesn't sound like in danger of exploding, but the rest of the article does. Hmmm. As I read the original article, I think one of the tanker cars exploded in the original head-on collision and there is another tank car(s?) in danger of exploding.
36 posted on 09/13/2002 9:17:10 AM PDT by CatoRenasci
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To: Solson; i_dont_chat
Neither. Chemical plants have fires and explosions... they just do...

...an industrial accident which is not uncommon to this area.

...the people there are accustomed to accidental fires and explosions.


True, indeed!

I grew up within sight of the petrochem plants & refineries crowded along the Houston Ship Channel. After a while, upon hearing a " WHUMP! ", we would listen, rather than look. It was easy to identify the plant involved, because each had its own, distinctive fire alarm/whistle...

Such incidents were all too common.

Hope the news that no one was hurt is correct!

TXnMA (No Longer!!!)

37 posted on 09/13/2002 9:25:18 AM PDT by TXnMA
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To: scan59
If your water is already hot, what do you need a heater for?

(Thank you, George Carlin.)

38 posted on 09/13/2002 9:29:06 AM PDT by uglybiker
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To: CatoRenasci
I found this article on the nerve-gas(?) Epichlorhydrin. I wish I knew more German.

Dienstag, 10. September 2002

Gefahr nach dem Zugunglück (Danger from the train accident?)

Epichlorhydrin  

Epichlorhydrin (C3H5ClO) ist eine farblose, (colorless) stechend riechende Flüssigkeit. Das Nervengift (Nerve-poison) ist ein Grundstoff für die Kunststoffindustrie und wird beispielsweise bei der Herstellung von Klebstoffen verwendet.  

Epichlorhydrin kann Leber und Nieren schädigen und wirkt stark reizend auf Augen und Schleimhäute. Wird es eingeamtet, ist je nach Menge mit Kopfschmerzen, Übelkeit oder Lungenödemen zu rechnen. Der Stoff gilt auch als Krebs erregend. Kommt es zu Hautkontakt, ist Blasenbildung möglich.

Wird der Stoff verschüttet, müssen umgehend alle Zündquellen entfernt werden, da es zu einer Explosion kommen kann, wenn Epichlorhydrin mit Säuren, Lagen, Metalloxiden, Alkoholen oder Kohlenmononoxid reagiert. (explosion possible if it comes in contact with acid, metal-oxide, alcohol, ?)


Is it a coincidence the Germans raided that Mosque in Hamburg around the same time?
39 posted on 09/13/2002 9:49:15 AM PDT by syriacus
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To: syriacus
Does anybody know how to do the "Babelfish" thingy?
40 posted on 09/13/2002 9:54:43 AM PDT by Frank_Discussion
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To: i_dont_chat
Thanks, that's all I needed to know.
41 posted on 09/13/2002 10:03:29 AM PDT by the_doc
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To: Frank_Discussion
here's a Material Safety Data Sheet for 1-chloro-2,3-epoxypropane, aka epichlorohydrin.

Having the electron-rich chlorine right next to the stressed three-member (two carbons, one oxygen) ring, can make for a touchy substance.

42 posted on 09/13/2002 1:07:20 PM PDT by Chemist_Geek
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