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Allied Terminals Fertilizer Tank Collapse
FINAL REPORT: Allied Terminal Fertilizer Tank Collapse
Location: Chesapeake, VA
Accident Occurred On: 11/11/2008
Final Report Released On: 05/26/2009
Accident Type: Community Impact
Company Name: Allied Terminals

statistics

Total # of Recommendations
10
Total # of Open Recommendations
1
Total # of Closed Recommendations
9
Total % of Open 10 vs. Closed 90

investigation information

Image
Accident Description
On November 12, 2008 a two-million-gallon liquid fertilizer storage tank collapsed at the Allied Terminal distribution facility in Chesapeake, VA. The incident critically injured two contract workers, who were hospitalized. Two members of the public who tried to aid the injured men required treatment likely related to exposure to ammonia vapor from the released fertilizer. The fertilizer over topped a containment dike and flooded sections of a nearby residential neighborhood. At least 200,000 gallons of spilled fertilizer could not be accounted for, and some reached the nearby Elizabeth River, which flows into the Chesapeake Bay.
Investigation Status
The CSB released its final report at a news conference in Chesapeake, VA on 5/27/2009


 

Recommendations

Allied Terminals Inc.
2009-3-I-VA-1

Take immediate action to reduce the risk of a catastrophic failure of Tanks 202, 205, and 209 at the Allied Terminals Hill Street facility including but not limited to significantly reducing the maximum liquid levels ("safe fill height") based on sound engineering principles. Report the actions taken to the City of Chesapeake.

URGENT!
Status: Closed - No Longer Applicable
Closed - No Longer Applicable (C - NLA) - Due to subsequent events, the recommendation action no longer applies (e.g., the facility was destroyed or the company went out of business).
 

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2009-3-I-VA-2

Select and retain a qualified, independent tank engineering firm to evaluate Tanks 202, 205, and 209 and determine their fitness for continued service. The evaluation should be based on recognized and generally accepted good engineering practices, such as API 653 - Tank Inspection, Repair Alteration, and Reconstruction and API 579 - Fitness for Service.

URGENT!
Status: Closed - No Longer Applicable
Closed - No Longer Applicable (C - NLA) - Due to subsequent events, the recommendation action no longer applies (e.g., the facility was destroyed or the company went out of business).
 

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2009-3-I-VA-3

Within 30 days, provide the report prepared by the independent tank engineering firm to the City of Chesapeake, together with a comprehensive action plan and schedule to address any identified deficiencies.

URGENT!
Status: Closed - No Longer Applicable
Closed - No Longer Applicable (C - NLA) - Due to subsequent events, the recommendation action no longer applies (e.g., the facility was destroyed or the company went out of business).
 

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2009-3-I-VA-6

Hire a qualified independent reviewer to verify that maximum liquid levels for all tanks at Allied’s Norfolk and Chesapeake terminals meet the requirements of American Petroleum Institute Standard 653, Tank Inspection, Repair, Alteration, and Reconstruction. At a minimum, the review should verify that all requirements for welding, inspection of welds, and In-Service and Out-of-Service tank inspections are met. Make the complete review report for both terminals available to the Cities of Norfolk, Chesapeake, and Portsmouth, Virginia, as well as the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

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2009-3-I-VA-7

Develop and implement worker safety procedures for initial filling of tanks following major modification or change-in-service. At a minimum, require the exclusion of all personnel from secondary containment during the initial filling.

Status: Open - Awaiting Response or Evaluation/Approval of Response
Open - Awaiting Response or Evaluation/Approval of Response (O - ARE/AR) - The recipient has not submitted a substantive response, or the evaluation by CSB staff of a response is pending, or the Board has not yet acted on staff recommendation of status.
 

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
2009-3-I-VA-4

Revise and reissue the Chemical Emergency Preparedness and Prevention Office Rupture Hazard from Liquid Storage Tanks Chemical Safety Alert. At a minimum, revise the alert to: 1) Include the Allied Terminals tank failure, 2) Discuss the increased rupture hazard during first fill or hydrostatic testing, and 3) List The Fertilizer Institute fertilizer tank inspection guidelines in the reference section.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

Fertilizer Institute
2009-3-I-VA-10

Formally recommend to all member companies the incorporation of The Fertilizer Institute tank inspection guidelines into contracts for the storage of liquid fertilizer at terminals.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

Govenor and Legislature of the Commonwealth of Virginia
2009-3-I-VA-5

Require state regulation of 100,000-gallon and larger fertilizer storage tanks (which presently are located solely along and in the area of the Elizabeth River) or authorize local jurisdictions to regulate these tanks. The regulations should: 1) Address design, construction, maintenance, and inspection of 100,000-gallon and larger liquid fertilizer storage tanks, and 2) Incorporate generally recognized and accepted good engineering practice.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

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HMT Inspection, Inc.
2009-3-I-VA-8

Implement The Fertilizer Institute’s inspection guidelines as part of tank inspector training and inspection procedures for fertilizer tank inspection.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

2009-3-I-VA-9

Revise company procedures to require tank inspectors to verify that radiography required as part of the calculation for a maximum liquid level has been performed.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

 
 

Related News

IMG_5914
CSB Issues Final Report on Allied Terminals Catastrophic Fertilizer Tank Collapse; Board Calls for Regulation of Similar Tanks Located on the Elizabeth River
5/27/2009
Chesapeake, Virginia, May 27, 2009 – In a final report issued today into the November 2008 fertilizer tank collapse at Allied Terminals in Chesapeake, VA, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) recommended that the Commonwealth of Virginia regulate or authorize local jurisdictions to regulate the design, construction, maintenance and inspection of large fertilizer storage tanks located on the Elizabeth River.
read more
IMG_5902
CSB to Conduct Full Investigation of Causes of Catastrophic Fertilizer Tank Collapse at Allied Terminals in Chesapeake, Virginia; Issues Urgent Safety Recommendations Citing Hazard to Public from Welding Defects on Several Remaining Tanks
12/8/2008
The U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) today issued urgent safety recommendations following last month’s collapse of a two-million-gallon liquid fertilizer storage tank at the Allied Terminals distribution facility in Chesapeake, VA, urging the company to take immediate steps to safeguard three other nearby fertilizer storage tanks from possible failure.
read more

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