(Updated paragraph 2 with details on the deceased.)
By DAN MURTAUGH, LANANH NGUYEN and ELIOT CAROOM
Chevron had a furnace fire in the cracking 2 area
at its Pascagoula refinery in Mississippi that caused the
death of one worker.
operator Tonya Graddy was
later identified as the deceased. Graddy, who had been an
operator for five years, was one of the operators standing
outside the unit when the explosion occurred, according to
plant manager Tom Kovar.
The fire occurred at 2 a.m. local time on Friday at the
330,000-bpd plant on Mississippis Gulf Coast, Kurt
Glaubitz, a San Ramon, California-based spokesman for the
company, said in an e-mailed statement.
The cracking 2 unit has been shut, Terry Jackson, Jackson
County deputy director of emergency services, said by phone.
The rest of the refinery
is not shut, he added.
Refinery personnel responded to the fire and secured the
site, Glaubitz said. He wouldnt say if the fire has
been extinguished, nor whether any portion of the refinery
has been shut down in response.
Allison Cook, a Pascagoula-based spokeswoman for the company,
identified the location of the fire in a message on a
community hot line.
produces 130,000 bpd of
gasoline, 68,000 bpd of diesel and 50,000 bpd of jet fuel,
according to a company website. It also produces bunker fuel,
liquefied petroleum gases and other products.
The plant processes heavy, high-sulfur crude. In August, it
imported 278,000 bpd of oil from Brazil, Canada, Colombia,
Mexico and Venezuela. Two of its shipments from Colombia were
the highest-density crudes imported to the US that month,
according to Energy Information Administration data.