While the oil refinery industry in Port Arthur has slowed down somewhat in the last few years, there is still a vital oil refinery industry in the area. The Valero’s Port Arthur refinery represents just one of the sixteen refineries that Valero Energy Corporation operates in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the Caribbean. There is a risk of accidents occurring at any refinery, which can often result in serious injuries, fatalities, and extensive property damage. Examining some elements about the Valero’s Port Arthur refinery suggests some of the particular ways in which accidents can occur at the refinery.

The History of Valero’s Port Arthur Refinery

The Valero’s Port Arthur refinery was initially constructed in 1901.Headquartered in San Antonio, Valero Energy Corporation is an international manufacturer and marketer of transportation fuels, petrochemical products, and power. Over the course of the last one hundred years, the Valero’s Port Arthur refinery has had many additions and improvements. In 2001, nearly $850 million was invested in equipment so that the Valero’s Port Arthur refinery could run heavy, sour crude. Several years later, in 2007, further improvements were made to increase the refinery’s capacity to 310,000 barrels each day. In 2012, even more improvements were made to the refinery’s capacity. Located on the Texas Gulf Coast and around ninety miles east of Houston, the Valero’s Port Arthur refinery’s location is designed to include access to Gulf Coast crude oil. Currently, the Valero’s Port Arthur refinery has the capacity to produce 310,000 barrels of crude oil a day and employs 820 individuals.

The Potential for Explosions at the Valero’s Port Arthur Refinery

An explosion at the Valero’s Port Arthur refinery occurred in November of 2007.The specific cause of the explosion was determined to have been an electrical problem in the diesel furnace section of the refinery. The explosion ultimately resulted in a fire during an emergency shutdown of a unit. Fortunately, no injuries resulted from the incident. Even though no one was directly injured in this explosion, there is a great risk given the details of the oil refinery process of an explosion occurring.

While there are numerous ways that explosions at oil refinery plants can be caused, some of the most common reasons include: improper maintenance of anything at the refinery including alarms, boilers, lack of due care to make sure that important metal parts at the refinery have not weakened, the regulations regarding what types of chemicals  in the refinery process are not involved, and the various workplace compliance regulations established the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have not been followed.

Contact a Talented Port Arthur Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one has been injured in a Port Arthur refinery accident, it is a wise idea to retain the services of a skilled accident attorney who knows how to best respond to such a case . Obtain the services of a savvy and talented Port Arthur accident attorney by contacting our firm today.