Pipeline fire continues to burn after tug boat collision

Pipeline fire continues to burn after tug boat collision
Photo provided by the New Orleans Coast Guard.

POSTED: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 - 2:00pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 - 2:04pm

A pipeline fire that severely injured a tug boat captain continues to burn this afternoon.

The Louisiana Coast Guard reports that the fire is still too dangerous to put out. The blaze erupted Tuesday, March 12 near Bayou Perot south of New Orleans at roughly 6:00 p.m. after a tug boat struck the pipeline. The 154-foot barge was quickly engulfed in flames.

Four people were on the tug boat at the time of the incident. The boat’s captain sustained burns to 75 percent of his body. He was rushed to the Baton Rouge General burn unit and was listed in critical condition.

Another crew member was reportedly injured when he jumped from the burning vessel. He was treated at a local hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.

Officials say the pipeline is owned by Chevron and the owner of the barge is Setoon Towing. They note that the fire will diminish as the product burns through.

The Coast Guard is investigating the crash and monitoring any oil that might have contaminated the water.

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