24 September 2001 16:59 [Source: ICIS news]
WASHINGTON (CNI)--The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is reminding US fertiliser producers to watch for suspicious purchases in the wake of terrorist attacks on New York and Washington DC, CNI learned Monday.
The chemicals are used as fertilisers by farmers, lawn care companies and consumers. But a two-ton bomb made from ammonium nitrate destroyed a federal building in Oklahoma City in 1995, killing 168 and injuring hundreds.
In the aftermath of that attack, government authorities and the fertiliser industry stepped up efforts to help dealers report suspicious purchases, although the chemicals were not banned.
In light of the 11 September terrorist assault in the US, The Fertilizer Institute (TFI), an industry group, has issued a reminder to manufacturers, distributors and transporters to be aware of the potential for theft of the substances.
"At this difficult time, it is extremely important for anyone witnessing suspicious activity to contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF)," said TFI president Gary Myers. "I urge producers, retailers and transporters to cooperate in this effort."
Posters and brochures focusing on the need for increased awareness are being distributed by TFI. The materials are part of the "Be Secure For America" campaign, an industry government initiative to ensure fertiliser products are used as intended.
The program, co-sponsored by TFI, ATF, the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials and the Agricultural Retailers Association, publicises a toll free number (800/800-3855) for use in reporting suspicious activity.
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