May 11 (UPI) — A tanker ship collided with two barges in the Houston Ship Channel on Friday afternoon, causing at least one of the vessels to leak a chemical used in the creation of gasoline, officials said.
The collision caused one of the barges to sink and put a hole in the other. The second barge leaked reformate — a product mixed with gasoline before it is sold — into the water. Both barges were carrying about 25,000 barrels of the chemical.
Port of Houston spokeswoman Lisa Ashley said reformate is a Category 1 flammable that is dangerous to aquatic life.
Officials shut down the ship channel. Residents in towns near the channel reported a strong gasoline smell in the region.
There have been no reports of injuries associated with the collision.