US Celanese relies on trucks, rail for deliveries at Bay City plant

17 October 2017 23:20 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Celanese is relying on trucks and rail for deliveries at its plant in Bay City, Texas, following logistics disruptions caused by Hurricane Harvey, the CEO of the US-based acetyls producer said on Tuesday.

For Celanese, logistical problems and feedstock supplies proved to be the bigger challenge posed by Harvey, said Mark Rohr, CEO. He made his comments during an earnings conference call.

The storm interrupted supplies of raw materials and made it difficult to ship finished goods, he said.

Work is still being done to remove debris on the Colorado river, he said. That has prevented barges from serving the company's Bay City plant.

"As we speak today, we're still trying to get barge traffic to Bay City," Rohr said. "We have four dredges lined up outside of the plant site trying to dredge the last few miles of the silted up Colorado river."

Celanese itself suffered no significant damage at its sites in Bay City, Bishop and Clear Lake, its three locations in Texas.

These plants were temporarily shut down and restarted within days of the storm, he said.

Overall, Harvey cost Celanese $11m in fixed overhead, clean-up and restart costs in the third quarter.

Lost sales opportunities and higher costs caused by contingency plans cost were $20m-30m of segment income, Rohr said.

The ripple effects of the storm are over, and Rohr does not expect any more significant losses from Harvey during the fourth quarter, he said.

By Al Greenwood