Huge Fire burns at oil refinery in Carson, California : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Fire burns at oil refinery in Carson (Carson-AP) -- Firefighters are battling a huge fire at an oil refinery in Carson.

Los Angeles County Fire Captain Brian Jordan says firefighters received a report of an explosion and fire at the Tosco refinery shortly before 5pm.

Huge plumes of black smoke are billowing into the sky and can be seen for miles.

Fire engines, a hazardous materials team and at least one ambulance was dispatched to the plant, although it's not yet known if anyone was hurt.

The cause of the fire is not known.

-- Martin Thompson (, April 23, 2001


Fire Burns At Oil Refinery In Carson Apr. 23 (AP) A fire that erupted at an oil refinery sent plumes of black smoke billowing over the Los Angeles area Monday afternoon. Balls of flame could also be seen shooting into the air at the Tosco refinery in this suburb 15 miles south of downtown Los Angeles.

"There is black boiling smoke, jet black and periodic boiling up flames right at the base there it is again," Alan Wayne said from his office building about two miles east of the flames. "It has just blackened the sky ... I've had enough of this I'm going to the hockey game."

Fire engines, a hazardous materials team and at least two ambulances were dispatched to the plant, although it wasn't immediately known whether anyone was hurt.

The fire broke out about 5 p.m., said county Fire Department spokesman Roland Sprewell. The cause was not immediately known.

As the blaze spread through the refinery, in an industrial area dotted with storage tanks, it quickly sent huge plumes of black smoke billowing into the clear-blue sky.

Some of the smoke drifted over a nearby residential neighborhood. Fire Capt. Raymond Schindler said no one was evacuated in the immediate aftermath of the fire but fire officials were evaluating whether to order evacuations.

"They're monitoring the air quality downwind and will make that determination," Schindler said.

Jerry Martin, spokesman for the state Air Resources Board, said area residents should be wary of the thick smoke.

"Particulates can contain a lot of different compounds some of which can easily be harmful to the public if inhaled," he said. "If you're downwind of the refinery I would advise people to stay indoors if at all possible ... Children, older people, people with illnesses in particular should make sure they're not breathing this."

Copyright 2001

-- Martin Thompson (, April 23, 2001.

The smoke plume is visible all over the L. A. basin. It looks more spectacular than it really is bacause its in a coaking unit. Really heavy left overs that burn with a lot of residue. Fire units are just keeping equipment, piping, valves, other cracking towers cool around the fire to keep it from spreading. It will eventually burn itself out. The smoke plume is the real problem. Going to see a lot of lawsuits out of this due to repiratory and property damage. Black oily sooty residue is falling out from Long Beach down into Orange County.

-- pho (, April 23, 2001.

Unbelievable! It seems like one disaster after another to tamper with our energy consumption. This disaster might guarantee $2.00 gas for CA. I suppose we're going to have transformers blowing up left and right in CA this summer. The sad thing is our energy crisis has to get ten times worse before we more actively pursue wind and solar energy. Denmark is the world champ with 13% of their energy needs being satisfied with wind power.

-- Guy Daley (, April 23, 2001.

100,000 in S. California are ordered to stay inside as big oil refinery burns REUTERS NEWS SERVICE 04/24/2001

A blaze burns at the Tosco refinery in Carson, Calif., Monday. (Nick Ut/AP) LOS ANGELES - A spectacular fire at a major oil refinery outside Los Angeles sent huge plumes of thick black smoke billowing over three cities Monday, forcing about 100,000 residents indoors and threatening a huge spike in gasoline prices in California.

The blaze broke out in a cracking unit of the 125,000 barrel per day Tosco Corp. refinery in the Los Angeles suburb of Carson. It was extinguished after three hours, but hot spots and some ground fires remained, a Los Angeles County sheriff's spokesman said.

About 100,000 residents in three cities - Carson, Wilmington and Long Beach - were told to stay indoors, with their windows closed. But that order was lifted by midevening.

No injuries were reported in the blaze, which broke out shortly before 5 p.m. (7 p.m. St. Louis time).

Tosco is the largest independent refiner and marketer of petroleum products in the United States. It owns the Wood River refinery in Roxana, Ill.

The cracking unit is used to break down fuel oil and is one of the major processes in turning crude oil into gasoline. 686256A38001E142D?OpenDocument&Headline=100%2C000%20in%20S.% 20California%20are%20ordered%20to%20stay%20inside%20as%20big%20oil% 20refinery%20burns

-- Martin Thompson (, April 24, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ