Terrorism at home?greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
"2 held in plot to blow up big propane tanks" Sunday, December 5, 1999 By DOUG WILLIS The Associated Press
"SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Federal agents have arrested two anti-government militia members in connection with an alleged plan to blow up a huge propane storage site, federal officials said Saturday."
"The arrests Friday came after a nearly yearlong investigation by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force into a potential threat against the Suburban Propane site in Elk Grove and other targets in the Sacramento area, the U.S. Attorney's Office said in a news release. The other threatened sites were not identified."
"The facility stores 24 million gallons of liquefied propane fuel and is about a mile from a housing subdivision, Suburban Propane spokesman John Fletcher said."
"Authorities believe the alleged plan was designed to exploit Y2K fears among the nation's hate groups, The Sacramento Bee reported Saturday."
"We think we stopped a terrorist attack," a source close to the investigation told the Bee. "Can we be certain they would have carried it out? We don't know. We had to behave as though they were going to do it."
"The U.S. Attorney's Office identified the two men as Kevin Ray Patterson, 42, of Camino and Charles Dennis Kiles, 49, of Placerville. They are due in court Monday on federal firearms charges."
"The newspaper said both men were members of a San Joaquin County militia group and had been stockpiling large numbers of illegal weapons."
"Suburban Propane was notified by the FBI about two months ago about a potential threat, Fletcher said."
"Company officials said most of the fuel is stored in two non-pressurized tanks at 50 degrees below zero, and that if the tanks were ruptured the propane would likely pool within protective berms of mounded soil. They said it could ignite only after it had considerable time to warm and mix with the air."
"However, Elk Grove Fire Chief Mark Meaker said a major explosion and fire probably would destroy the berms and affect nearby homes, schools, and businesses."
-- Deb M. (email@example.com), December 05, 1999
Well, we can't go scaring the public can we?
This is pretty scary stuff. The propane would "pool"? Hmmm...I thought it would vaporize almost immediatly upon exposure to atmosphere (the top layer anyway). I've also never seen a non-pressurized propane tank. I understand if you keep it cold the pressure won't build up but do they really chill a huge tank (12 million gallons) so cold that pressure can't build up? Up north a 5000 gallon tank blew some years ago and it broke windows five miles away and blew full grown oak trees right out of the ground.
Don't think they want to dwell on this too much....I heard the story reported ONCE on a local news radio station....one time only on a 24 hr. news station...wonder who decided to pull the story and why.
It's worrisome though...they caught these clowns and the guy who wanted to blow the pipeline. There must be dozens of wackos out there they haven't caught.
-- Don Kulha (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 05, 1999.
-- Hokie (email@example.com), December 05, 1999.
Goes right along with "throw out the canned foods" per expiration date, else you keel over. Go Buy some more.
-- God's Green Acres, unless Man messed with mixture (Sick&Fed@Terroristplot.com), December 05, 1999.
I'm not throwing out my canned goods, especially the SPAM, it will last longer than me and I heard it gets better with age.
-- bardou (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 05, 1999.