Monday, July 19, 2010

Chinese Port Closed To Shipping After Oil Explosion

Dalian Shut Down as Slick Spreads
Shipping News Feature

CHINA – The North Eastern port of Dalian has been closed to freight traffic after a huge explosion and fire left the oil terminal there in flames. The first explosion happened on Friday after the discharge of a Libyan registered tanker starting a conflagration that raged over the weekend. It seems that a pipe from the tanker caught fire and exploded bursting an adjacent pipeline which also ignited.

As the fires died an estimated 1,500 tonnes of fuel was spilled into the Yellow Sea and now, on Monday night, some fires are still burning at the China National Petroleum Corporation site. Dozens of specialist vessels have been drafted into the area to skim oil from the surface of the water and spray dispersal chemicals but experts say it may be two weeks to eliminate traces of the spill.

At the time of writing no statement has been made regarding any deaths or injuries but the oil slick is reportedly approaching an area of 20 square miles. Dalian is a regular port of call for container services as well as tankers.

A video report can be viewed HERE.