Richmond refinery fire largely contained; BART, bridge traffic back to normal

Air quality warnings lifted for those living in or passing through region

A large fire that blazed last night at Chevron's Richmond refinery compromised air quality and prompted a shelter-in-place warning that has since been lifted in the cities of Richmond, North Richmond and San Pablo.

The fire at the Chevron refinery was contained late last night, according to the Contra Costa Health Department and Chevron.

At 11:12 p.m. Contra Costa Health Services announced that residents were no longer at risk and were able to open up their houses after hours of sheltering-in-place.

Residents were advised that they did not need to remain indoors, Contra Costa Health Services Hazards Specialist Maria Duazo said.

A health advisory remained in place overnight for anyone with smoke allergies or breathing problems in those cities that were advised to continue to shelter-in-place, and the western part of Contra Costa County, Duazo said.

The fire at the Chevron refinery was contained at approximately 10:50 p.m., a Chevron spokesman said.

The refinery's general manager Nigel Hearne said at a news conference last night that the fire began at 6:30 p.m., and that one employee suffered a minor burn to his wrist and was treated on site.

He offered an apology to residents and said the priority is extinguishing the blaze.

He said Chevron is working with government agencies and regulators on site to determine the cause of the blaze.

Richmond fire Chief Michael Banks said there were reports of explosions around the time the fire started.

— Bay City News Service


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Figured So
a resident of Foothill High School
on Aug 7, 2012 at 5:45 pm

I guess gas prices were getting too low so they had to do something about it.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Steve
a resident of Parkside
on Aug 8, 2012 at 6:44 am

If you look at the larger picture, all the pieces begin to add up. Obama Administration, Bay Area liberalism, nearby BART, explosions before the fire. Looks like an effort by the environmentalist oddballs to claim yet again that global warming is on the rise. It's so obvious.

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