CSB Releases New BP Texas City Animation Marking the 15th Anniversary of the Deadly Refinery Incident

Washington D.C. March 23, 2020 – The US Chemical Safety Board is releasing an updated animation detailing the tragic events which occurred 15 years ago today at the BP America Refinery in Texas City, TX, when a massive hydrocarbon release and ensuing explosion and fire killed 15 and injured 170 others. The massive explosion was a landmark investigation for the CSB and revealed safety gaps at refineries across the country.

Interim Executive Dr. Kristen Kulinowski said, “The lessons learned from the BP Texas City event reverberate fifteen years later. The CSB’s newest animation updates and refreshes the CSB’s most viewed accident animation. We hope that this new version allows more viewers to learn from the findings and recommendations issued by the board that remain relevant years later.”

The BP America refinery explosion and fire was the most serious refinery accident ever investigated by the CSB. The CSB’s final report on the incident, released in 2007, found organizational and safety deficiencies at all levels of the BP Corporation.

The CSB’s investigation revealed a lack of corporate management understanding and commitment to safety. As a result of our investigation, there is a new standard of care for corporate boards of directors and CEO’s throughout the world, which calls for the same level of scrutiny for process safety management as financial management. Boards of directors of oil and chemical companies should examine every detail of their process safety programs to prevent future death and destruction. The CSB continues to provide reports, safety videos and educational tools for industry to use in driving process safety incidents to zero.

Link to Investigation Information Page: https://www.csb.gov/bp-america-refinery-explosion/

The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with in
vestigating serious chemical accidents. The agency’s board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.

The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to facilities, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov.

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