Tesoro Under Criminal Probe After Refinery Explosion

November 18, 2010 - OSHA Violations, Work Injury

Texas based Tesoro Corporation has revealed in its recent quarterly report that it is under investigation by the Environment Protection Agency for the April 2 explosion which killed seven workers an injured scores more at the Anacortes, Washington refinery.

Tesoro’s previous filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission claimed the EPA was looking into the incident, but did not say whether it was a criminal or civil inquiry.

Tesoro has already been fined $2.39 Million by the Washington Department of Labor and Industries (a state OSHA-type agency), after an extensive investigation into the working conditions at the refinery and how the Anacortes facility exploded. It cited the company with 39 willful and five serious violations.

The Tesoro Refinery Explosion was caused by a heat exchanger at the refinery which ruptured just after midnight on April 2, 2010, releasing hydrocarbon vapor. The vapor ignited, leading to a massive fire. Seven workers died.

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