04 September 2008 17:03 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Two tropical storms and a hurricane should remain in the eastern Atlantic basin during the next five days, far from the US Gulf coast petrochemical industry, meteorologists said on Thursday.
As of 10:00 Houston time (15:00 GMT), Tropical Storm Hanna was about 720 miles (1,160km) south-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, according to the National Hurricane Center. The storm should travel up the US Atlantic coast in the next five days.
Hurricane Ike was 525 miles northeast of the Leeward Islands, the centre said. Ike should reach the eastern coast of Florida in the next five days.
Tropical Storm Josephine was 520 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands, far from the Caribbean Sea, the centre said. It should remain in the Atlantic Ocean during the next five days.
The US petrochemical industry is vulnerable to tropical weather, in that much of it is concentrated along the Gulf coast. Several chemical plants and refineries remained off line on Thursday due to disruptions caused by Hurricane Gustav earlier this week.
An initial assessment at the company's Chalmette Refining site in Louisiana indicates that complex did not suffer severe damage, ExxonMobil said late on Wednesday. The company was conducting a final damage assessment.
Shell said late on Wednesday that its Motiva Norco refinery could restart some units within the next couple of days. The Motiva Convent refinery still lacks power, and no restart date was given.
Operations have started at the Motiva Port Arthur refinery, the Shell Deer Park refinery and chemical complex and the Shell Chemical Mobile facility, the company said late on Wednesday.
Shell said it could restart some units within the next few days at its Norco facility.
No restart date was given for Shell's Geismar facility, as power remains down, the company said late on Wednesday.
Source: The National Hurricane CenterTo discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect
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