US Olin to shut down chlor-alkali plants ahead of storm

27 August 2012 22:24  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US chlor-alkali producer Olin plans to shut down two of its Gulf coast plants in advance of a storm that is expected to reach hurricane force by the time it makes landfall, a company spokeswoman said on Monday.

We are taking every precaution to protect the safety of people working at our facilities in the possible path of Tropical Storm Isaac,” spokeswoman Elaine Patterson said in an email.

Olin’s chlor-alkali facility in St. Gabriel, Louisiana, will be shut down as of midnight Houston time (5:00 GMT) Tuesday, and employees will be sent home early, with minimal staff remaining on site, she said. The St. Gabriel plant produces 245,000 tonnes/year of caustic soda and 220,000 tonnes/year of chlorine, according to ICIS Plants and Products.

The company’s McIntosh, Alabama, plant will be shut down because of a suspension of rail service, Patterson said. The plant produces 350,000 tonnes/year of caustic soda and 320,000 tonnes/year of chlorine, according to ICIS.

“Our employees have a great deal of experience preparing for potential emergency situations, and they continue to carefully monitor weather forecasts in the region. Again, our focus throughout this situation will be on safely at the plants,” Patterson said.

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By: Ken Fountain

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