HOUSTON, Aug 31, 2005 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE: WLK) announced today that a situation involving a railcar leaking the chemical styrene has been brought under control in Cincinnati. Styrene is a chemical used to produce plastic and rubber, and is produced at the Company's Lake Charles, Louisiana facility.
Immediately after the Company was notified of the problem, it dispatched an emergency response team to Cincinnati. Westlake's emergency response team includes eight people with experience in multiple areas, including the safe handling of styrene, and the safe transport of chemicals over rail lines. While the surrounding area was evacuated as a precaution, there have been no reported injuries, and environmental authorities have determined that the emission levels do not pose a health risk to nearby residents. Residents this morning were allowed to return to their homes.
The Company has been working with the Cincinnati Area Chapter of the American Red Cross to provide food and shelter to those who temporarily had to leave the affected areas. Westlake is also cooperating fully with authorities investigating this incident.
"We regret the inconvenience this has caused local residents and assure them that Westlake is reviewing this incident and the chain of events that brought us to this point," said Warren W. Wilder, Vice President of Olefins and Styrene for Westlake Chemical. "We appreciate the expertise and diligence of local emergency officials. Their work has been invaluable in maintaining control of this situation."
Westlake Chemical Corporation is a manufacturer and supplier of petrochemicals, polymers and fabricated products with headquarters in Houston, Texas. The company's range of products includes: ethylene, polyethylene, styrene, propylene, caustic, VCM, PVC and PVC pipe, windows and fence. For more information, visit the company's Web site at http://www.westlakechemical.com .
Contact: David R. Hansen - Media Relations
Ruth I. Dreessen - Investor Relations
SOURCE Westlake Chemical Corporation
David R. Hansen, Media Relations, or Ruth I. Dreessen, Investor Relations, both of Westlake Chemical Corporation, +1-713-960-9111