Part of Houston Ship Channel still closed for cleanup after 2 ships collide, chemical spill

Associated Press

Several miles of the Houston Ship Channel remain closed as work continues to clean up after two vessels collided, spilling a flammable chemical into the waterway.

Coast Guard Petty Officer Dustin Williams says crews are focusing Wednesday on removing the ships so the channel can fully reopen. A 4-mile to 8-mile stretch of the channel has been closed since Monday when the two 600-foot ships collided in fog. Nobody was hurt.

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The Coast Guard is trying to determine if there's any danger from the gasoline additive — methyl tert-butyl ether or MTBE — that spilled in the crash. Cleanup could still take several days.

The 50-mile ship channel connects the Gulf of Mexico to the Port of Houston. The area is home to one of the world's largest petrochemical complexes.