World News

Suncor sends alert about leak at the Commerce City refinery

Officials at Suncor responded to a “small leak” at the Commerce City refinery Tuesday and an incident notification was released.

“Refinery personnel are responding to an incident,” Suncor said in a notification, at about 5:05 p.m., which alerted community members and was posted on the company’s website. “While you may have heard an alarm or may see smoke, no immediate action is needed.”

The company said that “the leak has been contained.” Refinery alarms were posted as part of a response plan, all workers have been accounted for and no injuries reported.

Suncor also reported the leak to regulatory agencies, including the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE), the refinery operators said.

“Data gathered from the Commerce City North Denver (CCND) Air Monitors has not indicated cause for any acute public health concerns,” Suncor said in an update on its website. A fence-line monitoring system indicates “below detection levels for all compounds measured.”

The company said it is taking the Tuesday incident “seriously” as it strives to ensure safety for the public and its workers.

In December, Suncor polluted Sand Creek with excessive levels of benzene, a chemical naturally found in crude oil and gasoline that can cause blood diseases, cancer and menstrual irregularities through long-term exposure. The refinery has been shut down since a series of malfunctions and fires during a late-December cold snap.

Pollutants that entered Sand Creek through the refinery’s stormwater system in December were 40% to 80% above permitted allowances, according to a letter sent by Suncor to the CDPHE’s Water Quality Protection Section.

Two workers were injured in a Dec. 24 fire at the plant, though no injuries were reported after a Dec. 27 fire.

After the Dec. 24 fire, Suncor officials shut down refinery operations to repair equipment damaged during the deep freeze and to perform maintenance across the facility. The company plans to bring the site back online gradually with the goal of being fully operational by the end of March.

Source: Read Full Article