Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Stuck Barge Carrying Flammable Coal Oil

About 1,100 students of the Sto-Rox School District were evacuated by police because of one of the barges stuck at the train bridge near Neville Island is carrying flammable coal tar oil with the chemical benzene.

U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Alanna McGovern says the current on the Ohio River broke some of the wires connecting the barges to a towing vessel this morning. "the current then took the four barges down to the back channel of Neville Island when they came to rest on the railroad bridge."

Of the three other barges that broke loose this morning, one carrying steel coils sank, another carrying coal passed by and an empty barge is also stuck.

McGovern says that the barge has a double hull and does not appear to have been breached. She says that the coast Guard is working with the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Pittsburgh Department of Public Safety to free the barges.

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