VALDEZ -- Alyeska Pipeline Service Co. says the public will not be allowed to tour its terminal this summer.
''We explored alternatives to continue public tours under heightened security screening, but couldn't satisfy ourselves,'' Richard Ranger, with Alyeska's Valdez business unit, told The Valdez Vanguard. ''We acknowledge the significance of the fact and are in the process of looking at alternatives to meet curiosity and interest.''
Alyeska also will close to the Alyeska Marine Terminal to family tours and has tightened restrictions on all visitors to the terminal, Ranger said.
Security has increased in and around all aspects of the pipeline since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Public access to the North Slope has been restricted and public access to pump station 7 in Delta Junction is closed.
Ranger said the decision to restrict access to the terminal is consistent among other energy providing facilities around the country.
The closure will likely hit Valdez Tours the hardest. The tour company, which shuttles cruise ship passengers from the dock to town, also contracts with the terminal and shuttles in visitors on a daily basis from May through September. Last season, 20,000 people visited the terminal through public tours.
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