Update on Friday’s Odor Issue
Feb 21, 2015
On Friday afternoon, we received some odor complaints at the Puget Sound Refinery as the result of planned maintenance on one of our facility’s flare systems. Refinery personnel responded to find and correct the source of the odor, and this maintenance activity was suspended.
As an additional precaution, health and safety personnel were dispatched to conduct air monitoring in the surrounding area. Despite the odor, no detectable levels of harmful compounds were found yesterday afternoon or last night. Overnight monitoring validates these initial findings. Shell has contracted an independent third party to monitor air quality, and plans to continue monitoring through at least Sunday afternoon.
While we are pleased about the results of this testing and the response of our people, our aim is to operate the refinery in a way that does not impact the community. The calls we received tell us that in this instance, we fell short of that goal. An internal investigation team has been launched to determine the exact cause of the odor, and we will not be resuming this piece of work until we are confident the cause has been determined and corrected.
Operations are stable at the facility, and we have been in touch with the appropriate regulatory agencies.
We would like to apologize again to our neighbors for the odor and also thank those who contacted us. We know that our license to operate comes from the community, and we are resolved not to impact them.