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Chevron Refinery Fire Information

Chevron Refinery Fire of August 6, 2012

On August 13, 2013, The Law Offices of R. Nicholas Haney and The Buzbee Law Firm filed a new lawsuit against Chevron USA, Inc. The claims are brought on behalf of over 5,000 residents, workers and visitors in the Richmond, California area that were affected by the Chevron refinery explosion and fire last year. The filing falls near the one year anniversary of the incident which took place August 6, 2012 when a 20-drip-per-minute hydrocarbon leak was found on a Crude Unit pipe. Chevron continued operating the Crude Unit despite the obvious dangers involved. Within three hours of the leak's discovery, a fire broke out. The blaze lasted several hours and sent a billowing cloud of toxic smoke into the surrounding community.

INTERIM INVESTIGATION REPORT - CHEVRON RICHMOND REFINERY FIRE (PDF)

According to the Interim Investigation Report of the Chevron Richmond Refinery Fire, released by the Chemical Safety Board, the source of the leak was a badly corroded pipe caused by sulfidation corrosion. Sulfidation corrosion occurs when sulfur compounds, found in crude oil, deteriorate steel equipment. A post incident inspection indicated that the pipe was corroded to 40 percent thinner than a dime.

Chevron failed to ensure that its refinery was operating safely before the August 6, 2012 fire. In October 2011, there was a Richmond refinery fire that prompted a worker to complain that corroding pipes were putting employees’ lives at risk. After that fire, Chevron determined that other pipes needed repairs but kept them in service, including the one that eventually failed on August 6, 2012.

These lawsuits were filed in the Superior Court of Contra Costa County and will all be settled at the same time. Please keep in mind that the litigation process will be a long one and may take two years or longer. It is also very important to keep my office and the Scranton Law Firm, who has been hired to help assist with these claims, informed of any of the following – please call (800) 648-8600:

1. Any changes in address that you or any family member may have;
2. Any new phone numbers;
3. Any new or continuing medical issues that were related directly to the Chevron Refinery fire in Richmond, CA on 08/06/12.

Please refer back to this website in the future for any updates regarding this incident.
For more information on this case, or if you feel that you may be eligible for representation, please contact my office.