Sulfur Tank Breach at Tesoro Refinery

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 @ 02:08 PM gHale


An explosion and breach of a one-ton sulfur tank at the Tesoro Refinery in Carson, CA, led to a shelter-in-place order for nearby residents Friday.

The 1 p.m. explosion caused the breach, which then allowed sulfur to release into the air, officials said.

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The lid of the 1-ton tank at the sprawling Tesoro refinery “blew off” about 1 p.m., said Inspector Gustavo Medina of the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

A fire also started but ended up quickly put out. The incident led to a shelter in place order for residents that lived within a quarter of a mile from the refinery, said officials at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

The shelter-in-place order ended up lifted after 6 p.m.

The levels of chemicals released into the air were not toxic to local residents and the shelter-in-place order was made just as a precaution, county and refinery officials said.

There were no serious injuries reported in the incident.

Tesoro’s Los Angeles refinery is the largest on the West Coast and is capable of processing 380,000 barrels of oil a day, according to the company’s website. The facility receives crude oil from California deposits as well as Alaska, West Africa and elsewhere and manufactures it into gasoline, jet fuel and other products.