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Motiva Enterprises (2719), Convent

Releases of Hydrocarbon

LDEQ Accident Number
Accident Date
Point Source(s) Notes Amount of Release

Terminal Drain
Cause: Motiva Truck Terminal drained backed up outside of the fence and overflowed Hydrocarbon gas, [Liquefied] "oil" into the refinery. No information given about what caused drain to overflow and release oil.

Followup: No

Notes: Motiva states that "Boom was deployed and the Hydrocarbon gas, [Liquified] "oil" remained on the refinery site until it was vacuumed out". No injuries were reported and no offsite impact occurred according to Motiva. No refinery letter included.
210.0 gallons

LPDES Outfall 002
Cause: 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.

Followup: No

Notes: 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.

Alky Unit
Cause: On January 22, 2014 Motiva Enterprises LLC (Motiva) Convent Refinery reported a release with injury due to sulfuric acid leak on the Alky Unit. Motiva reported the incident as per LAC 33:V.10111. B as it was unknown at the time of the even if the injured personnel would require emergency treatment. However, the injured person was assessed by Motiva Medical and received first-aid treatment only. The incident did not constitute an emergency condition as per LAC 33:I.3195 or as defined in LAC 33:I.3905, as it did not endanger the health and safety of the public, cause significant adverse impact to the land, water or air environment, or cause severe damage to property. The release of sulfuric acid did include some entrained hydrocarbons, was contained within secondary containment (the unit containment system). The entrained hydrocarbons included C3 through C8 hydrocarbons; however, based on process engineering calculations, there was no reportable quantity release of the hydrocarbons. Therefore the release was not an unauthorized discharge exceeding a reportable quantity as per LAC 33:I.3917.

Followup: No

Notes: Motiva's report states that the release of sulfuric acid was contained within the unit containment system. The report also refers to a previous report regarding the worker's injury which was not included in this documentation. There is no detail as to how and why the accident occurred and how it could be prevented in the future nor how the spillage in the unit containment system was disposed of. The spill is recorded as below reportable quantity yet there was still enough to cause worker injury.