Oil Spill: Gulf Water Sample Explodes When Chemist Tests For Toxicity (VIDEO)
In this video, WKRG News 5 investigates the toxicity levels of local public beaches that have been populated with people swimming and children playing in the water in Alabama. Their search ends with some explosive results.
WKRG teams up with Bob Naman, an analytical chemist with almost 30 years in the field. Naman tested WKRG's various samples for petroleum, and said he expected to find no more than 5 parts per million (ppm). Instead, Naman finds results that far exceed his expectations: 16 ppm from waters at Katrina Key, and 29 ppm at Orange Beach.
The most shocking results came from a sample of water collected near a boom at Dauphin Island Marina. When Naman combined the sample with an organic solvent that separates the oil from the water, which he did for all the other samples as well, it exploded in his lab, breaking the container and destroying the sample in the process. Naman thinks the reaction was caused by the presence of methane gas or Corexit, the dispersant that BP has been using in the Gulf.