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Chalmette Refining (1376), Chalmette

LDEQ Accident Report

Accident #132776
PDF AvailablePDF
State Police #11-04520
Accident Date2011-07-29
Report Date 2011-08-04
Follow-up Date 0000-00-00
Follow-up: No

Pollutants Released

Pollutant Duration Point Source Greenhouse Gas Criteria Pollutant Ozone forming chemical Amount of Release
Sulfur Dioxide3h 59mFlare 1NOYESNO567.0 pounds
Hydrogen Sulfide3h 59mFlare 1NONONOBRQ

Accident Classified As: Reportable Quantity

Cause of Problem: Maintenance/Procedures

On 01/28/11, at approximately 9:00am, the amine unit was being taken out of service for a planned maintenance activity. During the course of the shutdown, the DGA circulation in the contactor decreased. The reduced flow occurred concurrent with the loss of the LPG compressor. As a result, there was an H2S breakthrough to the refinery fuel gas system at approximately 1 minute. This event resulted in 86 lbs of excess SO2 emissions.

Discharge Preventable - Yes

According to the follow-up notification letter submitted by Chalmette Refining LLC on 08/04/11, this upset was preventable.

Notes/Remedial Actions

Fuel Gas incident- The shift leader recognized the problem within 15 minutes of the start of the event and immediately increased circulation to stop the H2S breakthrough and mitigate the SO2 emissions potential. Updated procedures to ensure shutdown activities include awareness of circulation rate and interaction with other unit operators. Refresher training will be conducted with unit personnel on revised procedure. In a separate event at 12:58am, the flare gas management compressors briefly shutdown due to elevated molecular weight (MW) gas which resulted in increased SO2 emissions from the fired combustion units of 481 lbs excess SO2