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Coast Guard to hold public hearing on fatal Bouchard barge explosion

May 9, 2018 02:17 PM

Two crewmen died in the incident last year near Port Aransas, Texas

Courtesy U.S. Coast Guard

The following is text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:

(NEW ORLEANS) — The Coast Guard is scheduled to conduct a formal public hearing July 16 at Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston to consider evidence related to an incident that occurred aboard the Bouchard No. 255 tank barge.

An explosion, fire, and subsequent loss of life occurred on board Bouchard B. No. 255 off the coast of Texas on Oct. 20, 2017.

The hearing is scheduled to convene at Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston, July 16 at 8 a.m. and will continue to Friday, July 27.

The Coast Guard will release a detailed schedule for the hearing at the beginning of July.

The hearing will focus on the condition of the barge prior to and at the time of the casualty, Bouchard Transportation organizational structure and culture, the regulatory compliance record of the B. No. 255 tank barge and the towing vessel Buster Bouchard, and the Coast Guard inspections program.

The National Transportation Safety Board, which is conducting its own investigation, will fully participate in the formal public hearing.

The Coast Guard has established an e-mail address for the public and interested parties to provide information, ask questions and make comments related to ongoing investigation and scheduled hearing. This e-mail will be checked regularly and all correspondence will be acknowledged. The e-mail is: Bouchard255@uscg.mil.

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