Toxic Spill From China Reaches Russia Town
Dec. 22, 2005
KHABAROVSK, Russia (AP) _ The toxic spill from the chemical plant explosion in China reached this Russian border city on Thursday, and the region's governor appealed for calm.
The dreaded 110-mile-long slick entered the city limits five weeks after the Chinese plant spewed 100 tons of benzene, nitrobenzene and other toxins into the Songhua River. The Nov. 13 accident shut off running water to the city of Harbin's 3.8 million people for five days.
The Songhua becomes the Amur in Russia, and Natalya Zimina, a spokeswoman for the regional administration, said levels in the Amur were normal.
The slick has been floating downriver and entered Russian territory last week.
Tons of carbon were being used to filter out contamination from water supplies taken from the Amur River, which normally provides the city of 580,000 with all its water. The regional governor said there was no need to cut off water supplies.
``We have done everything we could to safeguard and filter the water and we do not plan to cut off water to Khabarovsk,'' said Governor Viktor Ishayev. He appealed to inhabitants of the city ``to keep calm.''