The USCG and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are monitoring vessel traffic and cargo departing the port complex in Tianjin, China, following the tragic explosions on August 12th and 15th, 2015, due to concerns over possible chemical contamination on vessels or cargo bound for U.S. ports.
Vessels impacted by the Tianjin explosions are expected to call on U.S. ports over the next several weeks, a joint bulletin said.
According to the USCG, given the substantial size of the explosions and the suspected hazardous chemicals that were involved, ships and cargo in port at or near the times of the explosions may have been exposed to potentially hazardous dust, ash, or debris.
As informed, there have been no reports of vessels with confirmed hazardous debris or residues onboard. However, U.S. companies are looking for reassurances regarding the health and safety of those who handle shipping containers across the supply chain.
“The Federal government is working with local, state and federal port and international partners to coordinate efforts to identify any potential risks on inbound vessels and cargo to help ensure public safety,” the statement reads.
The USCG said that owners and operators of US-bound vessels should assess their ship and cargo for potentially hazardous residues, especially those that had cargo bays or hatch covers open when the blasts occurred and any cargo or containers that were likewise exposed during the explosions.
In addition, the Coast Guard urged owners and operators to report an ill person on board or an unknown substance or hazardous ash, debris or residue as these may be indicative of a hazardous condition and should be reported.