Federal authorities finished a report on the 2015 Torrance refinery explosion. Their paper finds Exxon Mobil culpable for the devastating accident. Previous investigations revealed that the company neglected its duty to update procedures and invest in modern equipment. Due to this irresponsible demeanor, there were 150,000 nearby citizens whose lives were put at risk.
The 2015 Refinery Explosion Was Due to a Degraded Safeguard
The unfortunate event occurred on February 18, 2015. The explosive blast was powerful enough to feel like an earthquake for Torrance residents. The aftermath revealed four injured contractors and a cloud of smog made of ash that covered nearby location.
After two years since the event, officials at the U.S. Chemistry and Hazard Investigation Board achieved a comprehensive picture of what really happened that day. The chairwoman of CSB, Vanessa Allen Sutherland, stated that the Torrance refinery had a faulty process in its safety management system.
“Finally, a critical safeguard within the system was degraded to the point of failure.”
The Board Urges Exxon Mobil to Update Its Safety Procedures and Equipment
On top of that, the board found the incident to have a more concerning nature than it first appeared. They discovered that the plant was harboring thousands of pounds of toxic hydrofluoric acid. The state has only two storages that keep such a substance while the entire country has 50 such units. If the blast succeeded to release such material over the nearby community, the event would have taken a catastrophic shape. This is because the toxicity of the acid is so high that it can enter the skin and damage the tissue immediately.
The 73-page report covered a lengthy list of recommendations that urge the company to improve the safety of any such facility as soon as possible. Exxon Mobil needs to write protocol even when workers have to deviate from their usual routine. Moreover, there is a need for a safety procedure update and important safety equipment in good shape.
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