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60,000 pounds of explosive chemicals disappeared en route from Wyoming to California – report

60,000 pounds of explosive chemicals mysteriously vanish during Wyoming to California shipment
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Approximately 60000 pounds of explosive chemicals, specifically ammonium nitrate, disappeared during a two-week rail shipment from Wyoming to California, Daily Mail reported.

The cargo, loaded onto a railcar at an explosives plant in Cheyenne on April 12, inexplicably vanished upon reaching Saltdale, an old mining town situated in the Mojave Desert.

60000 pounds of explosive chemicals, ammonium nitrate, infamous for Oklahoma City bombing, vanish in transit

The manufacturer, Dyno Nobel, promptly notified the National Response Center about the missing product. Known for producing explosives used in various sectors such as mining, construction, and oil and gas exploration, the company now faces the perplexing challenge of determining the whereabouts of the vanished cargo.

Ammonium nitrate, a compound notorious for its connection to the devastating Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, where 168 lives were tragically lost, is also commonly used as a fertilizer.

Recently, Dyno Nobel, the company involved in the incident, informed KQED, the first news outlet to report on the missing material, that ammonium nitrate fertilizer pellets are believed to have leaked from the railcar during transit.

This hypothesis gains support from the observation that the car containing the material was securely sealed before its departure from Wyoming, and the seals remained intact upon its arrival in California.

Missing shipment raises questions of safety and value, Union Pacific offers reassurance

According to Union Pacific, the railway company responsible for transporting the explosive chemicals, they stated that in the event of any leakage of the pellets from the train, it would pose no harm.

‘The fertilizer is designed for ground application and quick soil absorption. If the loss resulted from a railcar leak over the course of transportation from origin to destination, the release should pose no risk to public health or the environment,’ spokesperson Robynn Tysver told

Union Pacific further dismissed the possibility of theft, emphasizing that “‘we do not believe there is any criminal or malicious activity involved.”

According to Union Pacific, the transportation of the product involves hopper cars, with only a portion of the railcar dedicated to carrying the 60,000 pounds (30 tons) of pellets.

The value of the missing shipment is estimated to be around $18,000, considering that ammonium nitrate fertilizer costs approximately $600 per ton, as stated by New Mexico State University.

About the author

Brendan Taylor

Brendan Taylor was a TV news producer for 5 and a half years. He is an experienced writer. Brendan covers Breaking News at Insider Paper.

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