OSHA fines BP Products $21 million for plant blast

BP Products North America Inc. has agreed to pay more than $21 million in penalties for safety and health violations following an investigation of a fatal explosion at its Texas City, TX plant March 23 in which 15 workers were killed and more than 170 were injured. The penalties are part of a settlement agreement with OSHA.

10/01/2005


BP Products North America Inc. has agreed to pay more than $21 million in penalties for safety and health violations following an investigation of a fatal explosion at its Texas City, TX plant March 23 in which 15 workers were killed and more than 170 were injured. The penalties are part of a settlement agreement with OSHA.

"We know this settlement can never replace the lives that were lost or comfort the families that were devastated by this tragedy," said acting OSHA administrator Jonathan L. Snare. "But the agreement means that BP Products employees will be working in safer facilities because BP will be making the necessary safety and health upgrades."

The explosion was caused when a cloud of hydrocarbon vapors ignited during the start up of the plant's Isomerization Unit. The settlement also addresses other ongoing investigations at the Texas City Refinery and requires BP Products to implement process safety management plant-wide.

"This citation and penalty — nearly double the next largest fine in OSHA history — sends a strong message to all employers about the need to protect workers and to make health and safety a core value," Solicitor of Labor Howard M. Radzely said. "BP will pay the full fine, abate all the hazards, and significantly improve their safety measures."





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