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US chlor-alkali producer Olin shut down its plant in Tennessee

September 12/2011

(ICIS) -- US chlor-alkali producer Olin has shut down its Charleston, Tennessee, plant after reporting a mercury spill into a river, the company said on Friday. The production process at the plant remains shut down until this situation is resolved, according to a statement released by Olin.

About 50lb (23kg) of mercury was released into the Hiwassee river after unprecedented rainfall overflowed the plants treatment lagoons, said Meg Lockhart, spokeswoman for the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, the states environmental regulator. The region had been hit by rainfall caused by Tropical Storm Lee. Olin first reported the mercury release to the agency on Tuesday, and the release ceased to flow into the river on Friday.

Olins Charleston facility has a listed caustic soda capacity of 260 KTa, according to ICIS. The plant also produces chlorine.

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