LA Refinery Flaring Incident Not an Explosion

Monday, March 12, 2018 @ 03:03 PM gHale

Flaring shown from the PBF Chalmette Refinery Saturday had residents worried there was an explosion.

While it may have seemed like a dramatic explosion from a distance, there was no real cause for alarm as flames were shooting into the sky over Chalmette, LA, Saturday night.

In reality, what people saw was a routine safety measure calling “flaring” that is designed to safely combust hydrocarbons, said a spokesperson for the PBF Chalmette Refinery.

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After the flaring started around 11:15 pm Saturday, several people posted their concerns on social media.

Refinery workers notified the appropriate officials and agencies and that everything went as planned, officials said.

Elizabeth Frost, community relations director for the refinery, apologized for the alarm the planned flaring caused Saturday night.

“We notified all the proper officials and local agencies,” Frost said. She added the refinery sent information to St. Bernard Parish Government, posted the information to their Facebook page and placed ads that ran Friday in local papers about the flaring event.

Chalmette Refinery, located outside of New Orleans, Louisiana, is a 189,000 barrel per day, dual-train coking refinery with a Nelson Complexity of 12.7 and is capable of processing both light and heavy crude oil. 

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