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Valero (1238), Meraux

Releases in 2008

LDEQ Accident Number
Accident Date
Point Source/Release CauseNotes
111018

2008-11-22
Point Source(s):
South roof drain of Tank 300-2

Pollutant(s):
Crude Oil - 840 gallons
Benzene - 1 pounds
Volatile Organic Compounds - 500 pounds
Cause of Problem: No Information Given

No Information Given - Leak
This was a self report from Murphy to LDEQ regarding a crude oil leak to the ground north of Tank 300-2. the leak was contained inside the diked secondary containment. Steps were taken immediately to block in the roof drain. There was no visible oil on the roof. Murphy Oil recovered the free liquids with vacuum trucks. Soil with signs of visual contamination were scraped from the ground and will be disposed of at an offsite landfill. At the time of this report, Murphy was evaluating the incident toermine how best to repair the roof drain.
110526

2008-10-31
Point Source(s):
FLARE- Hydrocracker and #3 SRU Startup

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 14,983 pounds
Cause of Problem: No Information Given

No Information Given
This incident was under investigation as was the root cause on 11/7/2008 when Murphy notified LDEQ of said incident. There were no follow-up letters included for December 2008 in the information the Bucket Brigade received.
109830

2008-10-05
Point Source(s):
DAF Sump Line / Holding Tank X-V-021

Pollutant(s):
Dissolved Air Floatation (DAF) Float (EPA listed hazardous waste K048) - 11 pounds
Cause of Problem: Human Factors

contract personnel responsible for flushing DAF lines. Murphy Meraux Refinery experienced a spill of DAF float onto the ground while flushing the DAF Sump Line to Holding Tank X-V-021. Approximately 10.5 pounds of the EPA listed hazardous waste was windblown out of the containment area and onto the ground. Spilled material was immediately collected via vacuum truck and the remainder was scraped from the ground for disposal at a hazardous waste landfill.
This was a self report from Murphy to LEDQ. It was not preventable because it was the result of human error. Remedial Measures - contract personnel responsible for flushing DAF lines were counseled. Personnel will gauge volume in Tank X-V-021 before flushing lines. Details of the incident were made available to all refinery personnel. This release was over the LRTK reportable quantity which is 10 pounds.
109794

2008-10-03
Point Source(s):
FLARE - #2 FCCU Wet Gas Compressor

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 1,575 pounds
Cause of Problem: No Information Given

No Information Given
Note that at the date of this report - 11/10/08, the incident was still under investigation and that includes a root cause analysis.
No LDEQ Number Available

2008-09-29
Point Source(s):
Spill from tank truck

Pollutant(s):
n-Methyldiethanolamine - 87 pounds
Cause of Problem: Human Factors

The top hatch of the tank truck carrying N-Methyldiethanolamine from the refinery to the north tank farm via Judge Perez Drive had not been properly secured.
This was a self report from Murphy to LDEQ. The chemical sloshed out of the unsecured hatch and spilled onto the roadway. Spilled material was absorbed with sand and collected for disposal at a non-hazardous industrial facility. The clean- up required that the highway be shut down for approx. 70 minutes. It was preventable because it was due to human error. Remedial Measures - Contract personnel responsible for the loading and transportation of the material were counseled. Both parties will assure tall truck openings are secure prior to transportation of the material. The incident was discussed at refinery safety meetings. Details of the incident were made available to all refinery personnel.
109460

2008-09-22
Point Source(s):
FLARE - Boiler Feed Water Pump B-P-022A

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 8,842 pounds
Particulate Matter - BRQ
Cause of Problem: Other

the event was apparently triggered by the loss of boiler feed water pump B-P-022A due to high bearing temperatures after loss of cooling water to the bearing housing. The lack of water was due to plugging (Zebra mussels) of the cooling water line. MOUSAhad the pump on a temporary cooling line (once-through cooling water from the Mississippi River) because the Area 6 Cooling Tower was shut down on 9/21 due to a planned maintenance turnaround of the Hydrocracker Unit.
This incident was not preventable because MOUSA could not anticipate that the temporary cooling line would plug. Remedial Measures - for future events when the Area 6 cooling tower is shut down, MOUSA will run B-P-022B on conditioned city water. Subsequent to this event, MOUSA installed connections to enable the use of a temporary cooling tower to supply high quality cooling water if the conditioned city water is unavailable.
109415

2008-09-20
Point Source(s):
Floor of Tank 55-7

Pollutant(s):
Gasoline - 168 gallons
Benzene - 10 pounds
Volatile Organic Compounds - 16 pounds
Cause of Problem: No Information Given

No Information Given - Leak
This was a self report from Murphy to LDEQ regarding a gasoline leak to the ground from the floor of Tank 55-7. The leak was discovered at 0815 hours on 9/20/2008. Approximately 2 barrels were recovered by vacuum truck. The leak was contained inside thediked secondary containment. Steps were taken immediately to lower the roof legs in the floating roof of the tank and to transfer product from the tank so that it could be emptied. Water was pumped into the tank to displace the gasoline on the bottomgns of visual contamination has been removed for proper disposal. There was no impact to waterways.
108144

2008-08-19
Point Source(s):
FLARE - # 3 TGT Quench Tower Water Pump

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 1,700 pounds
Cause of Problem: Human Factors

the damage to the quench pump was a result of inadequate monitoring of the caustic addition system and the miscommunication that allowed the quench water pHto of off specification. MOUSA adjusts the pH if the circulating quench water by adding caustic to the loop. At the time of this incident, the caustic tote ran empty (the tote did not have any external level indication devices on it). Due to a miscommunication, MOUSA idd not refill the tote in a timely manner, leading to an 18-hour period of lowpH quench water that resulted in corrosion damage to the quench water pump
The final report from Murphy states that remedial measures include: In October, MOUSA replaced the TGT catalyst as part of a planned maintenance turnaround on the #3 SRU complex. MOUSA plans to install a second tote as a spare, and add sight glasses to both for quick verification of liquid levels. MOUSA will conduct preventative maintenance inspections on the quench water system. MOUSA will issue a Safety Alert to educate employees of this episode and its causes. NOTE: LDEQ investigations intoidents 108144 and 108122 both revealed control facilities not installed and/or properly maintained. The facility has been referred to the LDEQ Enforcement Divisio
108122

2008-08-16
Point Source(s):
FLARE - Boiler Feed Water System / #2 SRU Startup / Hydrocracker

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 13,897 pounds
Particulate Matter - BRQ
Cause of Problem: Corrosion

corrosion damage in B-V-454 - the control systems did not allow B-V-453 and B-V-454 to run reliably in parallel, as the level controllers attempt to work independently operators were unaware that the north and south BFW systems were operating on a common BFW line because a seldom used valve was open. Operating procedures did not address the potential for imbalance in the system when B-P-006B was shut down. in order to overcome the aforementioned design flaw, operators run the level control bypass on B-V-454 on manual. MOUSA found that existing procedures did not address all potential failure events in this operational mode.
This was an incident that involved three separate incidents. It is listed as preventable because the Boiler Feed Water trip on 8/16/2008 was found to be the result of faulty design, equipment malfunction, and operator and procedural error. Emissions from the startup of the #2 SRU were part of the normal startup procedure. The hydrocracker trip on 08/20/2008 was found to be the result of operator and procedural error. REMEDIAL ACTIONS -MOUSA repaired the trays in deaerator B-V-454. They modified prores regarding boiler feed water pump operations and is investigating engineering changes to improve controls on the deaerators. Also, they are developing procedural updated regarding the startup of the Hydrocracker. They completed repairs on MUG Comp
107973

2008-08-12
Point Source(s):
Leaking underground oily wastewater sewer line

Pollutant(s):
Oily Wastewater - BRQ
Cause of Problem: Corrosion

leaking underground oily wastewater sewer line that was corroded
This was a report from Murphy to LDEQ. The incident was not preventable because the source was a corroded underground sewer line. Remedial Measures - the leaking sewer line was taken out of service and replaced with a new steel line on August 25th, 2008. Soil with signs of visual contamination was excavated and disposed off-site at Woodside Landfill, LDEQ Facility # D-063-1941. The excavated area was backfilled with approx. 75 cubic yards of clean fill. The sewer in question serves the refinery'ab building, which is scheduled for demolition within 12 months, when the new lab building is completed. NOTE: Murphy states that since the leak occurred underground that it is difficult to determine the amount of the release and the time it began. N
107460

2008-07-23
Point Source(s):
Weld in the Isostripper Side Cut Receiver overhead line of the Alkylation Unit

Pollutant(s):
Butane - 149 pounds
Cause of Problem: Piping or Tubing

malfunction of a weld (0.1 inch diameter hole) in the Isostripper Side Cut Receiver overhead line of the Alkylation Unit.
This was a report from Murphy to LDEQ and according to Murphy no reportable quantities were exceeded. MOUSA applied water to the line as a precaution, and shut down the unit to repair the line.
No LDEQ Number Available

2008-05-16
Point Source(s):
Leaking valve

Pollutant(s):
Gasoline - 1 gallons
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

leaking valve on the loading hose. See Above # 871034.
This was a report by Murphy Oil to the LDEQ regarding two spills of gasoline into the Mississippi River from the refinery's dock on back to back days - see #871121 below. Murphy Oil immediately shut down the transfer line and blocked in the hose. The following day an additional 1 gallon of gasoline was released to the Miss. River as a result of a leaking valve on the loading hose. The hose is used for loading both ethanol and gasoline. Murphy Oil judged it safer not to remediate the gasoline spand allow it to dissipate. There were no reportable quantities exceedances for gasoline or benzene. The off-site impact was below reportable quantities for oil (RQ = 1 barrel) and benzene (RQ = 1- pounds. Murphy Oil is working with the hose manufactu
No LDEQ Number Available

2008-05-15
Point Source(s):
Hose failure

Pollutant(s):
Gasoline - 20 gallons
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

the cause of the spill was a hose failure while loading gasoline. Murphy suspects that the ethanol chemically degraded the hose despite the manufacturer stating that that the hose is designed to be compatible for both ethanol and gasoline.
This was a report by Murphy Oil to the LDEQ regarding two spills of gasoline into the Mississippi River from the refinery's dock on back to back days - see #871121 below. Murphy Oil immediately shut down the transfer line and blocked in the hose. The following day an additional 1 gallon of gasoline was released to the Miss. River as a result of a leaking valve on the loading hose. The hose is used for loading both ethanol and gasoline. Murphy Oil judged it safer not to remediate the gasoline spand allow it to dissipate. There were no reportable quantities exceedances for gasoline or benzene. The off-site impact was below reportable quantities for oil (RQ = 1 barrel) and benzene (RQ = 1- pounds. Murphy Oil is working with the hose manufactu
103894

2008-03-13
Point Source(s):
None Reported
Pollutant(s):
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

faulty breaker trip unit (make GE and model Power++ unit) which shut down the entire #2 SRU complex (#1 Amine Unit, #1 Sour Water Stripper, #2 SRU, #2Tail Gas Treater) at 10:20 hours. The breaker was re-set and restarted the #2 SRU at 11:12 hours. Varying rates of SO2 emissions were released at the #2 SRU Incinerator stack while the #2 Tail Gas Treater (TGT) was bypassed as part of the normal procedure. The breaker trip occurred again at 22:00 hours and MOUSA re-set the breaker and restarted the #2SRU at 1:40 hours. MOUSA then planned a unit shutdown at 13:00 hours, replaced the breaker, and restarted the #2 SRU at 14:20 hours. Root cause - faulty breaker trip unit (make GE and model Power++ unit).
This was a self report by Murphy. According to the report, they lost power and had to flare. While flaring, sulfur dioxide was released. The LDEQ report cites the GE breaker as the cause of the lost electrical power at Murphy. The Distillate Hydrotreater experienced this type of failure. The breaker was replaced and the DHT was returned to service. The breaker has been sent out for evaluation but it was also replaced with a different brand of breaker and the power has not reoccurred. This incident not preventable because the failure of the breaker trip unit was not a predictable event. Remedial Measures - at the next scheduled shutdown, MOUSA plans to replace the GE component with a more MicroVersa PM breaker trip, which is considered a more r
103793

2008-03-10
Point Source(s):
FLARE- #2 Sour Water Stripper Malfunction / South Flare

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 698 pounds
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

faulty transducer on the control valve actuator
This was a self report by Murphy. They verbally called in on 3/10/2008 and provided written notification on 3/17/2008. This is important because in their initial verbal report, the list sulfur dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, and volatile organic compounds ashaving been released. However, in their written report they only list sulfur dioxide as having been released. This accident was not preventable because the malfunction of the transducer was not a predictable event. Remedial Measures - MOUSA replaced faulty valve transducer with an upgraded, more robust model. MOUSA is identifying critical pressure control valves that have these particular trasducer models in order to determine which would benefit from upgraded transducers.
No LDEQ Number Available

2008-02-26
Point Source(s):
Tank 200-7 9EQT 0042, Source ID 200-7)

Pollutant(s):
Volatile Organic Compounds - BRQ
Cause of Problem: Other

see notes
This was a report from Murphy sent to the LDEQ. Murphy Oil is submitting this notification of an emissions exceedance in an amount greater than a reportable quantity according to Louisiana Air Emission Permit General Condition R of the Title V OperatingPermit No. 2500-00001-V2. On feb. 26, 2008, MOUSA determined that the No. 6 Oil stored in Tank 200-7 (EQT 0042, Source ID 200-7) at the Meraux Refinery had a Reid Vapor Pressure of approximately 2 psi from Feb. 26th through 29th. The emissions calcuons for Tank 200-7 and the River Dock Loading (EQT 0059, Source ID 5-88) based on this observation are included as an attachment to this notification. Based on the calculations attached, the RQ's of volatile organic compounds (not otherwise liste
103034

2008-02-12
Point Source(s):
FLARE - South Flare

Pollutant(s):
Hydrogen Sulfide - 104 pounds
Light Hydrocarbons - 2,000 pounds
Cause of Problem: Weather

the incident occurred shortly after a line of sever storms swept through the area. MOUSA experienced a malfunction (loss of flame) at the South Flare.
This was a self report to LDEQ from Murphy. At the time this report was made the incident was under investigation and a root cause analysis was not available. Bucket Brigade was not provided with a copy of the follow up report.
102854

2008-02-05
Point Source(s):
FLARE - Fuel gas regulator to Boiler B-6 / North and South Flares

Pollutant(s):
Nitrogen Oxide - 20 pounds
Particulate Matter - 4,000 pounds
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

root cause may have been contaminants in the fuel gas regulator to Boiler -B-6 which caused an automatic safety shutdown of Boiler B-6. As MOUSA attempted to restart the boiler and enact our Steam Shedding Olant to conserve steam, a steam deficit forcedBoiler B-5 and more units into safety shutdowns, resulting in large flares with smoke. A contributing factor was the inability to quickly restart Boiler B-6, which could not achieve startup permissive in the control system due to improper inlet airdamper position.
This incident was self reported by Murphy who described it in their first report to LDEQ as, smoking flares going off due to loss boiler and emissions from the hydrocracker and cat cracker…unknown chemical. The LDEQ report says the incident lasted several hours yet does not include any information regarding what type of chemical was released. The verbal update from Murphy (with no date) says that small amounts of sulfur dioxide were released and small amounts of nitrogen - maybe 10 pounds - was reed. It also states that, Smoke is particulates is unknown. This incident was not preventable because the failure of the fuel gas regulator was not a predictable event. Remedial Measures - MOUSA replaced the fuel gas regulator on Boiler B-6 and instal
102669

2008-01-29
Point Source(s):
FLARE- instrument air dryer and plant air headers

Pollutant(s):
Nitrogen Oxide - 43 pounds
Volatile Organic Compounds - 308 pounds
Cause of Problem: Human Factors

The root cause was determined to be inadequate labeling and operator understanding of the instrument and plant air utilities system.
This incident was listed as preventable because MOUSA did not maintain current labeling and P&IDs for the utilities section, and did not provide adequate training on the system. Remedial Measures - MOUSA will upgrade the labeling on pipes and valvesin the plant and instrument air utilities, update P&ID's for the air systems, install chain locks on critical valves, and provide operator training of the air systems. The report from Murphy states, MOUSA experienced automatic safety shutdowf several units following the loss of instrument air. As MOUSA attempted to restart units and restore balanced operations, the C3/C4 Splitter experienced a malfunction, resulting in a large flame with smoke emissions at the North Flare. MOUSA had sta
102685

2008-01-29
Point Source(s):
FLARE - #2 SRU Startup / plant instrument air

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 308 pounds
Cause of Problem: Instrument Failure

the episode was a result of a January 29th shutdown due to an emergency safety shutdown of the unit following a malfunction of plant instrument air.
This incident was not preventable because these levels of emissions are consistent with out SSM Plan. Remedial Measures - regarding the #2 SRU startup, no Corrective Actions are warranted. Regarding the instrument air failure, please refer to correspondence related to SERC Incident Number 08-00537. (at this time we do not have a copy of this)
102619

2008-01-21
Point Source(s):
FLARE- pressure relief valves in the #2 SRU complex / North and South Flares

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 38,400 pounds
Hydrogen Sulfide - BRQ
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

leaking pressure relief valves in the #2 SRU complex.
This incident was not preventable because the PRV malfunctions were not predictable events, as recognized by NSPS for flares that exempt PRV leakage. Also, permitted emission rates at both the North and South flares are based on estimated provided by a refinery-wide survey. not on monitoring data. NOTE: In the report Murphy acknowledges the flow to the North Flare could not be reliably ascertained (no reason given why it couldn't be), the quantity can only be estimated. It was estimated that ave sulfur dioxide emissions from this incident were 200 pounds per hour at the North Flare. They claim that MOUSA is currently on the process of developing an advanced flow monitoring system for both flares. I cam up with the total amount of sulfur di
102451

2008-01-20
Point Source(s):
Instrument Air Compressor - #3 SRU Malfunction

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - BRQ
Hydrogen Sulfide - BRQ
Cause of Problem: Instrument Failure

the air register to the Incinerator failed closed, starving the Incinerator of combustion air and resulting in a flameout in the #3 SRU Incinerator. The air register malfunctioned due to ice formation in the instrument. (overnight temperatures in the area were below freezing). The root cause was moisture in the instrument air from an instrument air compressor.
This incident was preventable because the instrument air line was not run through a drier, and MOUSA has no standard to address this issue. Remedial Measures - MOUSA published a standard that all instrument air from compressors must be run through driers.
102452

2008-01-19
Point Source(s):
FLARE - primary (north) Combustion Blower for the #2 SRU Thermal Reactor

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 687 pounds
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

the episode was the result of a January 15th shut down of the #2 SRU due to and emergency safety shutdown of the unit following a malfunction of the primary (north) Combustion Blower for the SRU Thermal Reactor. MOUSA started the backup (south) blower, but this machine exhibited high vibrations, so MOUSA was forced into a safety shutdown of the #2 SRU.
This incident was not preventable because the blower malfunction was not a predictable event. Remedial Measures - MOUSA repaired the North blower and returned the unit to normal operation without further incident. MOUSA is considering a redesign of the blower system.
102027

2008-01-03
Point Source(s):
FLARE - #3 Sulfur Recovery Unit Incinerator stack (EPN: 5-00)

Pollutant(s):
Sulfur Dioxide - 123 pounds
Cause of Problem: Other

excess emissions of sulfur dioxide occurred at the #3 SRU Incinerator stack due to a malfunction of the #3 SRU. The malfunction, a flameout in the #3 SRU TGTU Tail Gas Burner, resulted in an automatic TGT bypass. The MCR (Master Control Relay) connections were checked because and analysis of the Triconex output indicated a probable loose connection. A loose connection was found and repaired.
This was a self report to LDEQ with a follow-up report both from Murphy. The incident was not preventable because the loose connection was not a predictable human event. Remedial Measures - MOUSA inspected the unit and found a loose connection at the #48 terminal in the Master Control Relay for the #3 SRU. MOUSA tightened the connection and set up a Preventable Maintenance work order to inspect all critical relay connections during the next planned unit shutdown.
102011

2008-01-02
Point Source(s):
FLARE - Main Airblower at the #2 FCC, C3/C4 Splitter/ FCCU Fractionator

Pollutant(s):
FCC Catalyst - BRQ
Volatile Organic Compounds - 576 pounds
Nitrogen Oxide - 43 pounds
Sulfur Dioxide - 40 pounds
Propane/Propylene Mix - 15,446 pounds
Cause of Problem: Equipment Failure

the refinery experienced an automatic safety shutdown of the Main Air Blower at the #2 FCC, resulting in the release of FCC catalyst from the #2 FCC ESP stack (EPN #2-77). As MOUSA attempted to start the unit and achieve balanced operations in the refinery, the C3/C4 Splitter experienced a malfunction, resulting in a large flame with smoke emissions at the North Flare. The events may have been related and are under investigation. (Maybe an air pocket got into the system and caused this -see #102043)
This incident report includes two citizen complaints and a self report from Murphy to the LDEQ. Incident #102043, 102007, 102011, and 102050 are all regarding the same incident as best I can tell. In Murphy's report, they acknowledged that the eventresulted in significant flaring from the FCC main column overhead receiver and the C3/C4 Splitter. Also, MOUSA claims that they received three complaints of visible emissions but no allegations of impact. The LDEQ report states that some particulateter was released to the neighborhood and that at the time of the incident there was a north/northwest wind. NOTE- at the time of this report the incident was under investigation. However, no follow-up report was provided to the Bucket Brigade.