UPDATE: Eastman says operations safely shut down following power outage
Following a power outage at Eastman’s Kingsport manufacturing site on Friday morning, officials say as of that afternoon, plant operations have been safely shut down. Eastman says this outage and unplanned shutdown resulted in the release of methyl iodide, which is seen as purple vapor, into the air; as well as oil released into the South fork of the Holston River.
Officials say downstream users of the Holston River were notified, and neither the oil nor gas release pose a threat to the public. They go on to say no evacuations were ordered during the outage, however some employees in affected areas were sheltered in place temporarily. Eastman says it is working to determine the cause of the power outage and plans to restart site operations in the coming days.