Crude oil barge explodes off Texas, two missing -U.S. Coast Guard

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 20, 2017 12:03 PM

(Reuters) - Two crew members were missing from a barge that caught fire and exploded while carrying 140,000 barrels of crude oil to a refinery early on Friday in the Gulf of Mexico off Corpus Christi, Texas, U.S. Coast Guard officials said.

Six of the eight crew members were accounted for and the barge was anchored about two miles off the Port Aransas Jetty, officials said.

"There are no reports of any pollution, either water or air pollution from the fire," Coast Guard official Lt. Jennae Steinmiller said.

It was not immediately known if any of the crew members suffered serious injuries or what caused the fire. The Coast Guard has established a safety zone and the fire was still burning, officials said.

(Reporting by Jim Forsyth in Texas, Arpan Varghese in Bengaluru; additional reporting by Nallur Sethuraman; Editing by Bernadette Baum)