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U.S. Coast Guard Search and Rescue Station; Freeport, Texas

Freeport, Texas | 1986-Feb-24

Initial Notification: At 0800 on February 24, 1986, seven U.S. Coast Guard personnel were exposed to an irritating gas while working on boats at the Coast Guard Search and Rescue (SAR) station in Freeport, Texas. Initial symptoms were burning of the eyes, coughing, and throat irritation. Length of exposure was about 20-30 minutes, at which time the petty officer in charge of the station ordered all personnel inside the station. The only clue to the source of the gas was a medium brown haze hanging over the Down Chemical Company facility located about 1/4 miles from the Coast Guard station. Wind was reported to be blowing from the Dow plant toward the Coast Guard Station, Dow was contacted by the Coast Guard, Houston, with an inquiry into the possible exposure. Dow had no record of a release, but sent a representative to interview the exposed personnel. By about 1030 the victims began experiencing chest and stomach pains, vomiting and general lassitude. USCG district 8.

Incident Details
Products of concern:Chlorine gas
Latitude (approximate): 28° 58.16′ North
Longitude (approximate): 95° 21.80′ West