Houston Ship Channel reopens after tanker fire closed it

AP News
Posted: Sep 06, 2016 6:36 PM

DEER PARK, Texas (AP) — Vessel traffic is moving again in the Houston Ship Channel after it was reopened 15½ hours after a tanker fire and fuel oil spill closed it.

The U.S. Coast Guard said in a news release Tuesday that a mile of the channel was closed after a fuel tank on the 810-foot tanker Aframax River was punctured and caught fire around midnight Monday. The channel was reopened about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

The Coast Guard says the tanker wasn't carrying any cargo when the incident happened, the fire has been extinguished, and no one was injured. Coast Guard Capt. Peter Martin said much of the fuel that leaked from the tank burned and caused minimal environmental impact.

Investigators are still looking for the cause of the puncture and fire.