The Atlantic Cartier is now in European waters and sailing towards Antwerp.
Last week the ship stopped off in Liverpool,
and the following press release was issued by Merseyside CND.
Explosives and Uranium hexafluoride fire ship arrives back in Liverpool.
Steaming towards the Port of Liverpool at this very moment is the Swedish owned Ro-ro/container carrier, the Atlantic Cartier. Questions hang over this ship as to just how safe it is bearing in mind that on May 1st while in the Port of Hamburg it was seriously damaged when it went up in flames.
The ship’s cargo included 9 tons uranium hexafluoride ( UF6 ), destined for the Areva owned uranium-enriching plant at Lingen, Lower Saxony. Also included in the cargo were four tonnes of explosives, and 180 tons of flammable ethanol. When UF6 is exposed to moist air, it reacts with the water in the air to produce UO2F2 (uranyl fluoride) and HF (hydrogen fluoride) both of which are highly corrosive and toxic.
If the ship had exploded, then a cloud of the uranium hexafluoride might have been released into the atmosphere with all sorts of damaging consequencies for the Port workers and surrounding neighbourhood.
Following on from the fire the ship was repaired, and went to the Port of Liverpool and then onto
Halifax,Nova Scotia, New York, Baltimore, and Norfolk, Virginia.
It is due back in Liverpool at approximately 3am tomorrow morning.
We wonder if the Port of Liverpool authorities are aware of the Atlantic Cartier’s potentially dangerous cargo and what measures have they put in place to inform and protect the workforce and nearby population.’
The last few days.
On the weekend the ship stopped over in Hamburg were it was welcomed with a demonstration.
When the ship left port it was under ‘police protection’.
There are still a lot of unanswered questions about just what has happened with the ship.
They include: –
– Just what kind of repairs took place on the ship?
– What kind of safety inspection & safety certification has it now been given?
– Have any modifications been made to just what the ship is allowed to carry on board?
– Just what kind of cargo does the ship now have on board?
– Will there be any need for the ship to be isolated from the main harbour when it arrives in port?
– What kind of fire inspection has there been since May ?
– What kind of extra security is given to the ship if it carries such an deadly cargo on a regular basis?
What needs to be done.
Of course we only know about such dangerously mixed cargoes sailing around the globe because of the fire on the Atlantic Cartier. We just don’t know how any others there may be.
What we really need is a ban on Uranium and explosive materials being carried on the same ships.
It’s time to tighten up the shipping regulations.