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ExxonMobil Chemical Plant (286), Baton Rouge

Releases of Flammable Gas

LDEQ Accident Number
Accident Date
Point Source(s) Notes Amount of Release
91967

2006-11-09
F5 incinerator
No information given.
Cause: A piece of equipment, the F5 incinerator that the POX acid gas normally goes to, shut down for an unknown reason. ExxonMobil is investigating whether the shutdown could be due to an instrumentation

Followup: No

Notes: Flammable gas was released at 2268 lbs per hour. Amount of flammable gas released is unknown.
90956

2006-09-29
vent valve
Cause: They discovered that GUP 107 vent valve was partially open to a vent into the atmosphere.

Followup:

Notes: They secured the release at 640. The computer trend history shows that it may have started on sept 28, 2006 at 1800 hours. Amount of flammable gas released is over 1000 pounds. An exact amount released is unknown.
1,000.0 pounds
89354

2006-07-18
tank
Cause: A nitrogen blanket on a tank was found not to be in place.

Followup: No

Notes: Blanket was put back in place to secure. Over 1000 pounds of flammable gas is released. Exact amount of flammable gas released is unknown.
1,000.0 pounds
111125

2008-11-30

Tower CT01
Cause: They have a leak on the "bottoms line" on Tower CT01

Followup: No

Notes: Water was applied to wash down liquids. Incident caused by a leak on the "bottoms line" on Tower CT01. Unit was shut down. No quantities were exceeded. Material went off site and the air was not monitored.
111125

2008-11-30

Tower CT01
Cause: They have a leak on the "bottoms line" on Tower CT01

Followup: No

Notes: Water was applied to wash down liquids. Incident caused by a leak on the "bottoms line" on Tower CT01. Unit was shut down. No quantities were exceeded. Material went off site and the air was not monitored.
107433

2008-07-22

H furnace
Cause: Three events occurred within 24 hours of one another at the ExxonMobil Baton Rouge Chemical Plant. Two are reported in this report (LDEQ #107433), the other is reported separately (LDEQ #107421). In this incident (107433), a furnace tube leaked into convection section of H-furnace and caught fire. The tube leak occurred as a result of the incident described in report #107421. At approximately 5:56 PM on July 21, 2008, the charge gas compressor at the Olefins unit shut down when several processing cards in the gas turbine control system failed. When the compressor shut down, four furnaces automatically shut down and the gas in the furnaces was evacuated to the flare system. One of the remaining three furnaces was subsequently shut down while the remaining two furnaces continued to operated at 50% rates in order to maintain stable unit operations, which resulted in additional flaring for the duration of the event. The high rate of gas to the flare system resulted in the #25 flare smoking for 2 hours and 17 minutes. When the Olefins unit shut down, steam was introduced into the furnaces to displace the hydrocarbon feed to reduce flaring emissions. At 12:20 PM on July 22, 2008, while the H furnace was in the process of starting up, a leak was discovered in the convection section of the furnace. To stop the leak, water was introduced into the leaking pass of the furnace to displace the hydrocarbon feed. It is believed that the leak developed when steam was introduced into the furnace. Tube leaked into convection section of H-furnace and caught fire.

Followup: Yes

Notes: This incident is the result of the incident #107421 (see comments under that incident). Immediately after the incident began, five of the seven furnaces at the Olefins unit were shut down. Excess gas was sent to flare system. Water was introduced into the leaking furnace pass to displace the feed and prevent uncombusted hydrocarbons from leaking into the atmosphere. Concerning subsequent preventative actions, the failed processing cards were replaced. The H furnace was taken out of service to be inspected for leak location and repairs will be completed as necessary. Used water in the tube to eliminate the burning material. Flammable gass consisted of mainly Butane.
4,950.0 pounds
107027

2008-07-07
Flange
Cause: They have a blind flange leaking hydrogen and flammable gases.

Followup: No

Notes: At time of report they tried to tighten the flange, but the leak continued.
104041

2008-03-19
#16 flare
Cause: #16 flare went out due to electrical issues. Product went to the flare but as it was out, went to atmosphere.

Followup: No

Notes: They relit the flare after power was re-established
1,300.0 pounds
118173

2009-09-23
B furnace
Cause: Tube rupture in B furnace.

Followup: No

Notes: Tube taken out of service. Report says there was a potential for benzene and VOC emissions. LDEQ received the written report from Exxon but did not include it in this report, but stated that no RQs were exceeded.
116641

2009-07-21
Pipe on thermal oxidizer
Cause: Hole in a pipe on a thermal oxidizer

Followup: No

Notes: According to the Plant's Environmental Manager, a hole developed in a pipe on a thermal oxidizer releasing flammable gas and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere. Operators quickly shut in the unit. Further action by LDEQ pening results of investigation. Quantities of released chemicals are estimates.
1,000.0 pounds
113980

2009-04-06

RTO unit
Cause: RTO unit atmospheric safety and associated flaring caused by loss of an electronic card and computer failure. Failure of a computer control card resulted in several control valves to fail in the closed position and the atmospheric safety valve then lifted to the flare.

Followup: No

Notes: The card was replaced with a spare and the unit operations were reduced to minimize released.
1,000.0 pounds
113829

2009-03-31
pipe
Cause: A pinhole leak in a piping at higher elevation.

Followup: No

Notes: They needed to erect scaffolding to reach the clamp. No RQs were exceeded.
125934

2010-08-25
pump on P-541 discharge line
Cause: Leak on pump discharge line P-541.

Followup: No

Notes: No RQs were exceeded. At time of report Exxon was determining how to stop the leak.
120826

2010-01-16
bleeder valve
Cause: The block valve was discovered to be leaking

Followup: No

Notes: Leaking valve. Valve was isolated. Planned to repair it that day. Released quantities are minimum estimates. Exceeded RQs. When the leak was discovered, the bleeder was closed to prevent further release. An investigation is underway to determine root cause.
6,201.0 pounds
145241

2012-12-11
Flare and safety valve
NIG
Cause: ExxonMobil Chemical Plant experience an unanticipated cooling tower water line leak resulting in a shutdown of the Refinery Gas Recovery unit (OLA-1X and EPLA-S) causing 13 pounds of sulfur dioxide, 122 pounds of ethylene, and 29 pounds of propylene to be released as result of flaring. The OLA-1X compressor MC-01 experienced an increased in pressure resulting in an atmospheric safety valve lifting for approximately 45 seconds, released 5,817 pounds of flammable vapos into the atmosphere, 5,506 of which were propylene.

Followup: No

Notes: Unit operating procedures for stabilizing EPLA-S during an unanticipated OLA-1X shutdown were implemented to reduce the environmental impact. Root cause is under investigation. The reportable quantities for ethylene and propylene were exceeded.
282.0 pounds
158152

2014-08-19
No Information Given
Cause: No information given on event. Approximately 30 pounds of flammable liquid were released as a result of this event.

Followup: No

Notes: No Information Given
30.0 pounds
154608

2014-03-19
Pinhole in pipe on OXO Unit
Cause: ExxonMobil Chemical had a pinhole leak in a pipe on the OXO unit (produces OXO-alcohol). They are in the process of isolating the Unit. Due to prompt incident response to mitigate the event duration, no reportable quantities were exceeded. Approximately 400 Pounds of flammable vapor was released during the incident.

Followup: No

Notes: ExxonMobil chemical isolated the OXO unit. State Police notification document indicates that air monitoring was conducted around the perimeter of the reading. However, no results of that monitoring were included.
400.0 pounds
154640

2014-03-19
No Information Given
Cause: Exxon Chemical had a hole in a valve that is the source of the release. Due to prompt incident responses to mitigate the duration, no reportable quantities were exceeded.

Followup: No

Notes: As of March 19, 2014 the cause for release is unknown and is ongoing. They are in process of blocking in the line. Approximately 19 pounds of isoprene and 110 pounds of flammable vapors were released during the incident.
110.0 pounds