Update on Pine Bluff Arsenal Chemical Accident in Arkansas

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Latest news on cause of man's critical injuries as reported by local CBS affiliate KTHV Channel 11 is that "officials know what might have caused" the accident. They believe there may have been a leak in a white phosporus holding tank (used to make smoke bombs). This possible leak might have allowed oxygen to enter the tank, and caused the chemical to ignite.

Y2K or not, I find it a bit un-nerving that there are leaky tanks at a chemical arsenal.

-- Lisa (lisadawn@yahoo.com), January 04, 2000


Lisa, WP is used only incidentally in smoke bombs. It's primary purpose is as 1. an igniter in napalm; 2. WP hand grenades (quite effective...you can't smother the fire). The shells are used to ignite a town as the WP fire burns at about 1600 degrees and will seemingly ignite anything short of concrete.

The thought of having even one little spot of WP lodge on my skin gives me nightmares. This stuff doesn't stop burning until all the chemical is gone. I really feel for that poor dude at the arsenal.

-- Lobo (atthelair@yahoo.com), January 04, 2000.

Lobo- Thanks for the lesson. I was just repeating the talking head on the news, who mentioned smoke bomb only. The talking head was probably repeating the "official" at the arsenal.

-- Lisa (lisadawn@yahoo.com), January 04, 2000.

Yeah, I'm aware of how the talking heads do it. "Dan the Man" Rather did that very frequently during the VN war. It scares me that they downplay things like this. MY first thought when someone says smokebomb is a M-80 smoker from Mrs. Firecracker's place down the road.

Regarding WP, I didn't even like practicing with the dang things. I was always EXTREMELY afraid that my arm would delvelop a sudden cramp.

Sorry about the first post. Didn't mean to come across like I was trying to flame you.

-- Lobo (atthelair@yahoo.com), January 04, 2000.

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