Inspectioneering
News

Acid Leak at P66 Ferndale Refinery Sends 7 to the Hospital

Reuters, February 13, 2017
Reuters

One contract worker remained hospitalized on Saturday after a hydrofluoric acid leak at Phillips 66's Ferndale, Washington, refinery on Friday, the company said in a statement. Five other contract workers and one Phillips 66 employee were released from the hospital by early Saturday after being treated for exposure to hydrofluoric acid, which can be fatal. The workers were exposed while the 101,000 barrel per day (bpd) refinery had units shut down for an overhaul that began on Wednesday.

The leak was from the refinery's alkylation unit according to a report on the Bellingham Herald newspaper website. Alkylation units use hydrofluoric acid to convert refining byproducts into octane-boosting components of gasoline. The hydrofluoric acid release forced workers at the refinery to shelter indoors for about an hour, the company said. Alkylation units are considered the most dangerous in a refinery because a release of hydrofluoric acid from an explosion or fire could spread a possibly lethal vapor cloud across surrounding communities.

The South Coast Air Quality Management District, which regulates polluters in the Los Angeles area, has proposed banning the substance. A 2015 explosion at a Los Angeles-area then owned by Exxon Mobil Corp was found to have nearly released hydrofluoric acid into the atmosphere. A Nov. 22 explosion at an alkylation unit injured four people at Exxon's refinery in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

 

(Reporting by Erwin Seba; Editing by Bill Trott and Mary Milliken)

Click here to read the full article from Reuters.

Copyright 2017 Thomson Reuters. Click for restrictions.

Comments and Discussion

Posted by Efren Guico on February 15, 2017
Industry knew how dangerous the alky unit and... Log in or register to read the rest of this comment.

Add a Comment

Please log in or register to participate in comments and discussions.

Interested in equipment reliability & integrity? Sign up for weekly updates.

Inspectioneering Journal

Explore over 20 years of articles written by our team of subject matter experts.

Company Directory

Find relevant products, services, and technologies.

Job Postings

Discover job opportunities that match your skillset.

Case Studies

Learn from the experience of others in the industry.

Event Calendar

Find upcoming conferences, training sessions, online events, and more.

Industry News

Stay up-to-date with the latest inspection and asset integrity management news.

Blog

Read short articles and insights authored by industry experts.

Acronyms

Commonly used asset integrity management and inspection acronyms.

Asset Intelligence Reports

Download brief primers on various asset integrity management topics.

Videos

Watch educational and informative videos directly related to your profession.

Expert Interviews

Inspectioneering's archive of interviews with industry subject matter experts.