Dow to Suspend Louisiana Dock Work as Mississippi Swells

Dow Chemical Co. (DOW), the largest U.S. chemical maker, said it will suspend dock operations at two factory sites in Louisiana tomorrow as a precaution against potential flooding from the swollen Mississippi River.

While the company doesn’t expect floods at its Plaquemine and St. Charles sites, it is suspending dock work based on water-level projections, Gregory Baldwin, a Dow spokesman, said today in an e-mailed statement. It’s too early to say how long the suspensions will be or whether they will affect production and sales, he said in response to questions from Bloomberg News.

“Dow logistics professionals continue to work diligently to minimize the impact from this situation on our customers,” Baldwin said in the statement.

The Mississippi and Ohio rivers, swollen by heavy rain and melted snow, have been inundating cities and towns, flooding cropland and disrupting shipping.

Dow has three ethylene plants, known as crackers, along the Mississippi River in Louisiana. South of Baton Rouge are Plaquemine 2, which can produce 499,000 tons of ethylene a year, and Plaquemine 3 which can produce 758,000 tons, according to Bloomberg data. West of New Orleans at the St. Charles site in Hahnville is Taft 1, which can make 610,000 tons of ethylene a year.

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