NTSB To Investigate Barge Explosion

The National Transportation Safety Board announced November 7 it would investigate a November 4 barge explosion in Lemont, Ill., at an Illinois Marine Towing terminal about 25 miles from Chicago.

The barge was unloaded and was being cleaned at the time of the explosion. Its previous cargo was acetone, and a small amount of the cargo caught fire following the explosion. The fire was extinguished by the local fire protection district and no injuries were reported, but the barge suffered extensive damage.

Pollution responders, vessel inspectors, and investigators from Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Chicago responded to the scene. The cause of the explosion is under investigation.

There were no impacts to the navigation channel of the Chicago Ship and Sanitary Canal or Des Plaines River, and shipping traffic was not affected.