Port of Morehead City Closed After Chemical Spill

January 13, 2010

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The Port of Morehead City in North Carolina was closed Tuesday as first responders and emergency management officials addressed a chemical spill of pentaerythritol tetranitrate, the primary ingredient in detonating cords used for industrial explosions
and used in military devices and blasting caps.

In a news conference on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard said that additional damaged cylinders were discovered during overnight operations inside containers on site along with a small amount of residue inside the larger containers carrying the cylinders. Until officials determine the extent of the residue and damaged cylinders, the Port terminal will not be operational.

The North Carolina State Ports Authority is currently working with the U.S. Coast Guard to contain the spill and quickly reopen the terminal. The spill caused no reported injuries or environmental damage.

"The Ports Authority's goal is to reopen the Port of Morehead City as safely and as quickly as possible," said Thomas J. Eagar, CEO. 

To meet customers' needs, the Port is moving cargo to customers' facilities and allowing ships to dock at the Port.

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