Quick response limits impact of Ship Channel spill

HARC in the News


By Perla Trevizo, Houston Chronicle

Short-term air and water quality impacts from last month’s spill of thousands of barrels of gasoline product into the Houston Ship Channel appear to be limited, an outcome experts credit to a rapid response that contained and removed the toxic product.

A tugboat pushing two barges — each with a capacity to hold up to 25,000 barrels — collided May 10 with

a 755-foot tanker, the Genesis River, carrying liquefied natural gas. The tanker’s hull punctured two of the smaller vessel’s four storage tanks, leaking what turned out to be 11,276 barrels of a gasoline product called reformate, a highly flammable chemical that’s mixed with gasoline and can have high concentrations of the carcinogen benzene. READ MORE

It seems like at this point, the risk dissipated fairly quickly for this one,” she added. “The response was very rapid, they were able to get out there and boom off most of the spill fairly quickly and it was well-coordinated. I think we are getting better at responding quicker and at containing.

Dr. Erin Kinney, HARC