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Posts published in “Day: September 14, 2017

Oil spill into Ship Channel from Magellan/Galena Park

MAGELLAN MIDSTREAM has oil storage tanks and pipelines in Galena Park, similar to this view from their website.

GALENA PARK – Authorities are investigating a major gasoline spill from two storage tanks in Galena Park, damaged by flood waters from Hurricane Harvey. The tanks belong to Magellan Midstream, in Galena Park. The spill happened on Thursday, August 31 but was just recently reported.

The size of the spill, 11,000 barrels or 461,000 gallons, makes this a major environmental problem. However, the company said that they were able to contain the spill almost immediately, and only a small amount leaked into a drainage ditch and on to the Ship Channel. Spokesperson Bruce Heine said that the company covered the spill with firefighting foam to prevent harmful vapors from escaping into the air, and used containment floats to keep the liquid from spreading, and then it was recovered. They are currently excavating contaminated soil and trucking it to an approved landfill.

The Magellan terminal is near Hunting Bayou and the Ship Channel in Galena Park. The original estimate of the size of the spill was 1000 barrels, but raised when officials were able to access the area.

Harvey floodwaters caused other spills, from ExxonMobil, Valero , KinderMorgan, and Phillips elsewhere in Texas.

Hurricane Recovery Event held at Galena Park

WELLNESS SCREENING AND A MOBILE CLINIC VAN were part of the on-site Public Health Services brought to Galena Park by the Harris County Public Health department.

To combat the health problems brought on in neighborhoods flooded by Hurricane Harvey, the Harris County Public Health Department has put together a Mobile Wellness Unit, and dispatched it for a day into neighborhoods with significant flooding.

The initiative is known as “Taking Public Health to the Public” and provides much-needed services and supplies directly in the communities devastated by the recent flooding.

This week the Mobile Unit was assigned to Kingwood on Monday, and Galena Park on Tuesday. Other sites will be announced later. The parking lot of Baggett Center, on Keene Street, was the location of the Wellness Unit serving a large population in surrounding communities as well as Galena Park.

The following services were available free at this location:

– Immunizations, including tetanus, flu and childhood immunizations

– Dental screenings and supplies

– Wellness screenings, including blood pressure and blood sugar tests

– WIC services and nutritional information

– Mosquito control and education

– Food safety and clean water education

– Free Pet food and microchipping for dogs and cats

In addition, bags of groceries with bulk canned vegetables, hand cleaner, and crackers were also given out as basic subsistence.

More photos and information are available on page 8 of this issue. See @hcphtx on Twitter for more scheduled stops.

MOSQUITOS were fought by free cans of spray repellant, after you viewed a video of the health dangers of mosquitos and how to avoid them.

First responders sue over Arkema fumes

Several fires and subsequent explosions sent black smoke and fumes into the sky near Crosby.

CROSBY – Seven first responders and as many as 20 homeowners have filed suit over fumes from the Arkema plant explosions on Sept. 7.

The suits allege gross negligence and demand at least $1 million in damages in Harris County District Court.

Fifteen Harris County deputies and eight ambulance crews including the Medical Service Director were hospitalized on Sept. 3 after the last of refrigerated trailers exploded at the Arkema plant.

Reports indicate that ambulance personnel flung themselves onto their own ambulance gurneys and deputies vomited on the spot but most refused to be taken by ambulance to the hospitals because they would not vacate their vehicles due to munitions aboard their patrol units and elected to drive themselves to the hospitals.

Deputies and EMS personnel stand ready on US90 the night of September 7th, outside the 1-1/2 mile safe zone.

The suit alleges that Arkema had days of warning to be prepared for the disaster. It was over 500,000 gallons or organic peroxides within the nine refrigeration trailers that without the refrigeration capacity were expected to explode said the company. On August 31, the first of a series of explosions of the trailers dispersed throughout the plant’s property went off.

Although the Harris County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security insisted there were no concentrated ammonia compounds on the site, worry continued for most people in surrounding communities over air quality and the nature and size of explosions.