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Motiva Enterprises (2719), Convent

LDEQ Accident Report

Accident #156246
PDF AvailablePDF
State Police #14-02316
Accident Date2014-05-28
Report Date 2014-06-01
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
Oil5d 4h 44mLPDES Outfall 002NONONO5.4 gallons
Hydrocarbon5d 4h 44mLPDES Outfall 002NONOYESBRQ

Accident Classified As: Below Reportable Quantity (BRQ)

Cause of Problem: Weather

Heavy rains began during the early morning hours on 5/28, continuing through 5/30. This rainfall led to heavy flooding throughout the site. On 5/28 at 0716, oil was reported in the storm water ditch and notification was made to regulatory agencies of a possible release of oil exceeding 1 barrel. Additional calculation determined that the release was below RQ. At 1200, it was determined that the storm water with a "slight" oil sheen had migrated off site at two different locations: the St. James Canal and the Ascension Ditch. An overflow occurred, sending the contaminated water into the site stormwater ditch system. Oil containment and absorbent booms were deployed into the Ascension Ditch and the St. James Canal. Flooding continued across the site and storage capacity was exceeded. At 1300 on 5/28, discharge of process wastewater into the Storm Water System began to prevent the discharge of untreated process wastewater into the Mississippi River. Motiva also began to discharge from the Storm Water System via LPDES Outfall 002 to alleviate onsite flooding. On 5/30, another rainfall event affected the facility, resulting in additional flooding and the need for continuation of the emergency bypass operations. No offsite impacts. That 5/30 event also affected the facility steam system, which resulted in an upset of the Tail Gas Treating Unit No. 3 (TGTU-3). It was initially believed that this event led to exceedences for SO2, but calcuations determined that the RQ had not been exceeded.

Discharge Preventable - No

The incident was deemed not preventable because of the extremely heavy rainfall which occurred at the facility and overwhelmed the containment system.

Notes/Remedial Actions

Remedial actions were taken to contain and recover free oil onsite in order to minimize any potential for off-site impact. Motiva's primary Oil Spill Response Organization (ES&H) was immediately activated, along with additional support from United States Environmental Services (USES). The OSRO's worked around the clock deploying boom, recovering oil with vacuum trucks and discharging the oily water back into the refinery's slop oil system for reprocessing. "Extremely dilute" amounts of process water were discharged into the Ascension Ditch and St. James River.