Sixty thousand pounds of ammonium nitrate, used as a fertilizer but also in explosives, are missing from a rail shipment that was due to arrive in California from Wyoming.
Bay Area public radio station KQED reported Tuesday:
A railcar loaded with 30 tons of the chemical left Cheyenne, Wyoming, on April 12. The car was found to be empty after it arrived two weeks later at a rail stop in the Mojave Desert, according to a short incident report from the explosives firm that made the shipment.
The company, Dyno Nobel, made the report May 10 to the federal National Response Center, or NRC. The report also appeared last week in an NRC database of California incidents managed by the state office of Emergency Services last Wednesday.
Dyno Nobel says it believes the material — transported in pellet form in a covered hopper car similar to those used to ship coal — fell from the car on the way to a rail siding called Saltdale, about 30 miles from the town of Mojave in eastern Kern County.
Ammonium nitrate was the explosive in the massive bomb used in the Oklahoma City terror attack of 1995. It was also the substance that caused a deadly explosion in a warehouse in the port of Beirut, Lebanon, in 2020.
Foul play is not suspected yet, but the loss of a hazardous chemical is just the latest rail problem in the past several months. In February, a train carrying toxic chemicals derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, eventually leading to a massive explosion that spread potentially hazardous substances to the surrounding community.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new biography, Rhoda: ‘Comrade Kadalie, You Are Out of Order’. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
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