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Motiva Enterprises (1406), Norco

LDEQ Accident Report

Accident #136170
PDF AvailablePDF
State Police #11-07982
Accident Date2011-12-22
Report Date 2011-12-28
Follow-up Date 2012-02-08
Follow-up: Yes

Pollutants Released

Pollutant Duration Point Source Greenhouse Gas Criteria Pollutant Ozone forming chemical Amount of Release
Propylene2 h 40 mGO-1 Elevated Flare (EPN 1-90); Ground flare (EPN 9-84)NONOYESBRQ
Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)2 h 40 mGO-1 Elevated Flare (EPN 1-90); Ground Flare (EPN 9-84)NONOYESBRQ

Accident Classified As: Below Reportable Quantity (BRQ)

Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

On 12/22/11, Shell's GO-1 Process Unit experienced a unit upset. This process upset led to flaring at the Motiva's West Operations Ground Flare (EPN 9-84). Shell Chemical operations identified the cause of the unit upset was from problems with the hydrogen purity from the Process Swing Absorption unit (PSA). Shell Chemical operations switched to refinery hydrogen and the unit was stabilized. The cause of the issues in the PSA unit is believed to be several valves that were not functioning correctly. On December 22, 2011 Shell's GO-1 Process Unit had an upset in the de-propanizer column. This incident led to flaring at the GO-1 Elevated Flare (EPN 1-90).

Discharge Preventable - No Information Given

No information given.

Notes/Remedial Actions

Repairs to these valves were made and the system was safely returned to normal conditions. The failure of Shell's GO-1 Process Unit's de-propanizer column caused flares to occur in both Shell Chemical Elevated Flare (EPN 1-90) and Motiva's West Operations Ground Flare (EPN 9-84).