At approximately 5:40 a.m. on Tuesday, October 11, a regional power outage that took out power to over 90,000 Southern California Edison (SCE) customers also affected the Torrance Refinery. The refinery was without power for approximately 20 minutes, which resulted in a flaring event.
Plant personnel quickly assessed the situation and are working to stabilize operations. All safety systems at the refinery operated properly and all personnel are safe and accounted for.
The refinery also reported the incident to the South Coast Air Quality Management District and Torrance Fire Department (TFD) and California Office of Emergency Services.
As a precautionary measure, refinery personnel and TFD activated the Del Amo and Crenshaw Barriers to monitor traffic and activated Shelter in Place. Shelter in Place has been lifted. The Del Amo and Crenshaw Barriers have also been lifted. For awareness, Shelter in Place means to stay indoors, shut all windows and doors, turn off air conditioners or all air handling systems, and listen for further instructions.
TFD and refinery personnel are conducting fenceline monitoring, and monitors have detected zero readings.
The flare is a safety device that refineries use to relieve pressure and ensure gases are safely combusted to minimize releases to the atmosphere.
We have begun restarting operations, which will take days, and plan to do so safely with minimal noise and flaring.
Following the last outage, we initiated discussions with SCE about improving their grid to the refinery and will obviously look to accelerate those discussions and action by SCE to provide more reliable electricity to the refinery and the community.
We are able to meet all of our commercial obligations in fuel markets.