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Placid Refining (2366), Port Allen

Releases of Carbon Monoxide

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

FLARE: FCCU and sour water stripper
FLARE: FCCU & sour water stripper
Cause: "FCCU shut down to replace packing on Regen Slide valve." Flaring occurred upon restart of unit. FLARE.

Followup: No

Notes: RQ. Incident exceeded reportable quantities for sulfur dioxide. LDEQ report states that incident investigation status is "deferred until next inspection." No information given regarding remedial actions. LDEQ report only. No refinery letter.

incinerator 2 at sulfur plant #3
Cause: The #2 SRU tripped causing the air shutdown valve to close, forcing operations to shift the feed from the #2 SRU to the #3 SRU. The catalyst in the #2 TGTU became overloaded from the excess feed and breakthrough occurred causing sulfur to carryover to the #2 TGTU Quench Tower. The #2 TGTU Quench Tower became plugged with Sulfur and could not run at full capacity. The #2 TGTU had to be bypassed in order to clean the #2 TGTU Quench Tower. Reached RQ at 18:45 on the 23rd due to bypassing the #2 Tailgas unit. Normal was not reached until the 25th. The facility goes on to report that the shutdown was caused by a malfunction of a safety shutdown inherent to the technology of the design of the unit.

Followup: Yes

Notes: In an effort to reduce the quantity of sulfur dioxide emissions from this incident, the refinery reduced the charge rate to the FCCU, discontinued processing LCO through the Diesel Hydrotreater and put the Sour Water Gas to the #2 SRU. These steps allowed them to keep the #3 SRU at minimum feed rates while the Quench tower in the #2 TGTU (which served the #3 SRU) was being cleaned. The shutdowns on the #2 SRU were tested and found to be in good working order. If it is shutdowns again, their alternative will be to divert the feed to the #3 SRU or flare Acid Gas. Placid does not feel that design, operational, or maintenance changes are required because shutdowns are tested during every turnaround. They classify this incident as unusual and rare, therefore, it is not expected to have a significant probability of occurring again. The sulfur dioxide emission rate was greater than 20.0 pounds per hour continuously for three consecutive hours or more. Placid Refinery then pushed more pollution out of SRU #3. Sulfur component releases from SRU #3 production from the start of the incident on 12/23/11 to 12/25/11 were approximately 1,380 lbs.

Cause: Placid Refining Company operates a flare gas recovery unit that recovers routinely generated gases that would have been otherwise flared in Source ID 18-74. The recovery unit was shut down due to turnaround related unit cleaning activities sending high concentrations of nitrogen and steam into the flare system. This control device bypass was not approved via a variance.

Followup: No

Notes: Report states that no RQ's were exceeded. On the other hand, it also says that mass emission permit limits for the flare were exceeded. Placid has requested a GCXVII activity be added to their permit to cover monthly preventative maintenance on the system but this will only cover 5 hours per month. Operations will notify environmental department prior to shutting down system in the future so it can be addressed properly with the agency prior to activity. Report says to see an attached calculation with the name and quantity of released pollutants. Report shows no sign of such calculation.
1.2 pounds

SRU incinerator #1
Cause: A plugged quench tower in TGTU #1 that operated in conjunction with SRU #2 had to be taken out of service for cleaning resulting in a TGTU bypass which caused an increase in SO2 emissions from the SRU incinerator #1 on SRU#3.

Followup: No

Notes: The maintenance cleaning activity on the plugged Quench Tower was performed quickly as possible and reduced acid gas production by reducing processing unit charge rates and shifting the maximum acid gas load possible to the SRU #3. Operator training is being conducted to prevent the initial incident earlier in the week. Offsite air monitoring occurred throughout the duration of the incident.Additional operator training and any findings or corrective actions that stem from the formal Root Cause Analysis