Friday, October 15, 2010

Update: Morehead City Hazardous Material Spill Is The Explosive Chemical PETN

Port of Morehead City Closed By Explosives Incident

Everything between 4th St. and the Hwy 70 bridge to Radio Island has been shutdown in Morehead City, NC, in response to a hazmat emergency.

According to local media, nine containers carrying explosives were involved. No media are reporting precisely what the explosive material is, but Marine Corps EOD technicians from nearby Cherry Point are on-scene.

Is is SOP to call in a military EOD team for industrial accidents?

Update: I guess it is entirely appropriate to call in military EOD when the spilled explosives are PETN.

80 grams is enough to bring down an airliner. We don't yet know how large the containers were that were damaged, but since there are at least nine and this is an industrial shipment, a conservative guess is that we're probably talking a minimum of hundreds of pounds of the explosive.

As an aside, I wonder what kind of port security they have at Morehead. It seems to me such a shipment would make one heck of hijacking target.

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