Chemical leak hits Shell facility, fire at ExxonMobil plant in separate incidents

Channel NewsAsia 11 Jan 17;

SINGAPORE: Two petrochemical giants in Singapore were hit by separate safety incidents this week - ExxonMobil's chemical plant on Jurong Island caught fire early on Sunday morning (Jan 8) and the next afternoon, a chemical leak occurred at Shell's Pulau Bukom manufacturing site.

No injuries were reported in both cases, said the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF).

In response to queries, Shell confirmed on Wednesday that the leak happened in a unit that was already shut down for maintenance. "Mitigating measures were immediately taken. Repairs were completed on Jan 10," said a spokesperson for the company.

Shell added that "there is no adverse impact expected in the water or the surroundings" as a result of the leak.

When asked about what chemical was leaked, Shell said it does not provide such details "for reasons of commercial confidentiality".

"The cause of the leak is being investigated," its spokesperson added. "The safety of the community and our personnel, as well as the protection of the environment, remain our top priority."

SCDF said that as a precautionary measure, it deployed resources to be on standby at the site while Shell's in-house contractors carried out leak containment operations.

In August 2015, a fire at the same Shell facility injured six contractor workers.

EXXONMOBIL FIRE CAUSED BY RESIDUAL HYDROCARBON

The fire at ExxonMobil's Singapore chemical plant at 100 Jurong Island Highway started at about 5.30am. SCDF deployed three fire engines, a Red Rhino, an ambulance and seven support vehicles.

The fire was linked to residual hydrocarbon in one of the units within the premises, and was extinguished by SCDF within 25 minutes using a ground monitor, an unmanned fire-fighting machine and a waterjet, with the support of two fixed monitors from the in-house company emergency response team.

ExxonMobil said it "regrets" the fire, adding that the company is investigating the cause of the blaze.

"Safety is a core value at all our operations and facilities. We learn from all incidents and use these learnings to reinforce our commitment to continued safety improvement," ExxonMobil said. "While we manage our business with the goal of preventing incidents, we are prepared for emergencies should they occur and can respond quickly and effectively."

- CNA/mz/dl



Chemical leak at Shell site, fire at ExxonMobil
Kok Xing Hui The Straits Times AsiaOne 12 Jan 17;

Oil giants Shell and ExxonMobil both had busy starts to the week.

Shell had a chemical leak at its Pulau Bukom manufacturing site on Monday, while a fire broke out at ExxonMobil's Jurong Island chemical plant on Sunday morning.

No one was hurt in either incident, and both companies are investigating the causes.

A Shell spokesman said the chemical leak occurred in a unit that was already closed for maintenance and "mitigating measures were immediately taken".

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said it was alerted to the leak on Monday afternoon.

Though it was not needed, it made its resources readily available at the site while Shell contractors contained the leak.

Shell did not say what the chemical was, citing commercial confidentiality.

The spokesman said: "There is no adverse impact expected in the water or the surroundings. Shell has a health, safety, security and environment policy and we are strongly committed to it."

The fire at ExxonMobil's chemical plant happened at 5.30am on Sunday and was put out by the SCDF and ExxonMobil's in-house emergency response team within 25 minutes of SCDF's arrival.

SCDF said the ExxonMobil fire at 100 Jurong Island Highway involved residual hydrocarbon.

An ExxonMobil spokesman said: "Safety is a core value at all our operations and facilities. We learn from all incidents and use these lessons to reinforce our commitment to continued safety improvement.

"While we manage our business with the goal of preventing incidents, we are prepared for emergencies should they occur and can respond quickly and effectively."

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