Thursday, May 3, 2007

Fire Kills 2 at ExxonMobile Singapore Oil Refinery - World Oil Market Could be Effected

A fire today at Singapore's massive Exxon Mobile gas refinery has killed 2 people. Singapore's goverment has told the company to shut down some operations. World gas markets could be effected if the plant is forced to operate at reduced capacity according to a Reuters report (via CNN).
Exxon Mobil has shut a 115,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) crude oil unit at its refinery offshore Singapore indefinitely after a fire in an associated unit killed two workers on Thursday, the company said. . . "If they have to shut down the units for a long period, it will affect the gasoline market, as regional supplies are tight and demand from the United States is also strong," said Hwang Gyu-won, analyst at Tong Yang Investment Bank.
In December Jotman filed this posting on a previous incident at the refinery, and noted that Singapore does not allow environmental NGOs to operate within the city state. Today's incident appears to be the second major fire in the refinery's seven year history. Following is the Acusafe report on the previous fire seven years ago:
Fire at ExxonMobil Singapore Chemical Plant, 3 Injured (December 9, 2000)
A fire at a new petrochemical plant in Singapore early on Saturday left three workers critically injured while a fourth received outpatient treatment. The three Singaporean workers suffered 50 to 60 percent burn injuries as they were trying to switch on an additional source of fuel supply to the boiler. The operations of the affected boiler and another adjacent utility steam boiler have been stopped for investigation. Before the fire, the $ 2 billion petrochemical complex was due to start operations the following week. It is designed to produce 800,000 tons of ethylene and includes downstream plants to produce polyethylene and polypropylene.

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