Investigations into leak continue at Total Petrochemicals at Port Arthur, Texas

14-May-09
Investigations continue at Total Petrochemicals regarding reports of a gas leak that sent three contract workers to off-site medical facilities. The refinery is working to recreate the events, but has not filed an incident report with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, unless a leak is confirmed. Additionally, environmental, safety and health teams also have been testing for dangerous chemicals in the atmosphere, but tests have not shown any detectable levels of gas. A worker is reported to have smelled H2S, or hydrogen sulfide, while on a scaffold 50 feet in the air with a welder fitting a pipe. No alarms went off, but the crew evacuated the unit. Five contract workers were released from the hospital hours after becoming ill on Tuesday while working at Total Petrochemicals USA's Port Arthur, Texas, refinery, a company spokeswoman said. Chemical detectors at the site where the workers were laboring before becoming ill have not revealed elevated levels of substances that would make the workers sick.
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