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CITGO Refinery Hydrofluoric Acid Release and Fire
FINAL REPORT: Urgent Recommendation
Location: Corpus Christi, TX
Accident Occurred On: 07/19/2009
Final Report Released On: 12/09/2009
Accident Type: Release
Company Name: CITGO

statistics

Total # of Recommendations
2
Total # of Open Recommendations
0
Total # of Closed Recommendations
2
Total % of Open 0 vs. Closed 100

investigation information

Image
Accident Description
A fire in the alkylation unit at CITGO's Corpus Christi refinery led to a release of hydrofluoric acid (HF). The alkylation unit makes high-octane blending components for gasoline. One worker was critically burned.
Investigation Status
The CSB issued urgent recommendations on December 9, 2009, and formally closed its investigation at a public meeting on January 28, 2015.


 

Recommendations

CITGO, Inc.
2009-14-I-TX-1

  • Within 30 days, develop and initiate actions to ensure adequate water supply to the CITGO HF mitigation system.  Actions could include, but are not limited to, increasing onsite storage capacity, installing a permanent backup system, and developing procedures and training for water management in an emergency.
  • Every 30 days, report actions planned or completed to the Refinery Terminal Fire Company and Local Emergency Planning Committee.  Continue the 30-day periodic reporting until all planned actions are fully implemented.

URGENT!
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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2009-14-I-TX-2

  • Within 60 days, complete a third-party audit of all (Corpus Christi, TX and Lemont, IL) CITGO HF alkylation unit operations in the United States as recommended by API Recommended Practice 751, Safe Operation of Hydrofluoric Acid Alkylation Units, Third Edition June 2007. The selected lead auditor shall have extensive knowledge of HF hazards, HF alkylation units, and API 751. 
  • Consistent with the employee participation requirements of the Process Safety Management Standard for Highly Hazardous Chemicals (29 CFR 1910.119(c)), share all audit results and actions planned or completed to correct deficiencies in each refinery with all CITGO and contract employees whose work area includes that refinery’s alkylation unit.

URGENT!
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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Related Video

Surveillance video from July 19, 2009, fire and explosion at the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery
12/9/2009 5:00:00 AM
Surveillance video from July 19, 2009, fire and explosion at the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery read more

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Related News

citgo1
CSB Issues Urgent Recommendations to CITGO; Finds Inadequate Hydrogen Fluoride Water Mitigation System during Corpus Christi Refinery Fire Last July
12/9/2009
Houston, Texas, December 9, 2009 – The U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) today issued urgent safety recommendations calling on CITGO to immediately improve its emergency water mitigation system in the event of another release of potentially deadly hydrogen fluoride (HF) vapor, as occurred following an explosion and fire July 19, 2009, at CITGO’s Corpus Christi refinery. The Board also called on CITGO to perform third-party audits to ensure the safety of its hydrogen fluoride units at its Corpus Christi, Texas, and Lemont, Illinois, refineries.
read more
CSB Investigative Team to Examine Hydrogen Fluoride Release from ExxonMobil Refinery in Illinois
8/7/2009
Washington DC, August 7, 2009 – A four-member investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) is deploying to the site of a release of propane and hydrogen fluoride at the ExxonMobil refinery in Joliet, Illinois. At approximately 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, there was a sudden release of propane and hydrogen fluoride (HF) from the vicinity of a pump in the refinery’s alkylation unit, which uses HF as a catalyst. The leak did not ignite, but one operator was transported to the hospital suffering from what were described as serious, HF-related chemical burns; he was initially reported in critical condition. A second operator was examined at the hospital and released. The unit’s water deluge system, which is designed to contain airborne HF releases, was activated and the alkylation unit was shut down. Refinery personnel were instructed to shelter in place.
read more
CSB Deploys to Fire at CITGO Refinery in Corpus Christi, Texas
7/20/2009
A four-member investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) is en route to the site of a fire that began Sunday morning in the hydrogen fluoride (HF) alkylation unit at the CITGO refinery in Corpus Christi, Texas. One worker was airlifted to a burn center in San Antonio as a result of the accident at the 163,000 barrel per day refinery. The alkylation unit was reported to be shut down.
read more
 
 
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