US ExxonMobil sued over aromatics leak at Baton Rouge complex

24 June 2013 23:07  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--A group of people living near ExxonMobil's complex in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, are suing the company in state court, alleging that a leak at an aromatics unit damaged property and caused health problems.

ExxonMobil did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday.

The leak started on 14 June 2012, with several thousands of pounds of benzene, toluene, cyclohexane and other chemicals escaping from the unit, the lawsuit said.

About a month after the leak, a team from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) inspected the plant and allegedly found several problems that put people living near the complex at the risk of being exposed again to the chemicals, the lawsuit said. 

The EPA reported corrosion of the plant's pipes, valves and vessels, the lawsuit said. According to the EPA, ExxonMobil allegedly failed to follow several standards of the American Petroleum Institute (API) as well as other engineering practices.

The leak on 14 June 2012 was not the first time that chemicals escaped from the plant, and the lawsuit alleged that similar releases could happen again.

The people filing the lawsuit are seeking class-action status and unspecified damages.

ExxonMobil's complex in Baton Rouge includes a refinery as well as chemical and plastics plants.

By: Al Greenwood
+1 713 525 2645

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