Fire at IMTT fuel terminal in St. Rose sends two to hospital

Fire at IMTT fuel terminal in St. Rose sends two to hospital
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International-Matex Tank Terminal employees and St. Charles Parish emergency officials were responding to a fire on Monday afternoon at the company’s St. Rose facility that has hospitalized two contract employees, a company spokesperson said.

“At approximately 1:45 p.m. this afternoon, International-Matex Tank Terminals experienced a fire impacting an out-of-service aboveground tank at its St. Rose, La., storage terminal,” David LaPlante said in a news release. “IMTT personnel are currently working with local authorities to get the fire extinguished.” 

“Two contractors sustained injuries and are being assessed and treated at a local hospital,” he said. “All personnel on-site have been accounted for. The company immediately activated its emergency response plan and notified the appropriate officials and agencies.” 

A spokesperson with the state Department of Environmental Quality said the fire occurred in a tank that normally contains 2,500 barrels of crude oil, but contained only residuals after being emptied.

“A flash fire occurred, causing two people getting injured and air-evacuated out,” said Gregory Langley. “The nearby railroad has been shut down due to close proximity.”

He said smoke from the fire is settling low in the atmosphere and blowing towards a wooded area, but does not seem to pose a threat to the public. Officials are monitoring the smoke’s potential movement towards Interstate 310, which will be shut down if necessary, he said.

At 8p.m., responders were still fighting two active fire spots, and a 12-inch foam sprayer had just arrived for assistance, Langley said, and smoke blowing offsite from the fire has shifted from the northeast to due north.

Nearby storage tanks were being cooled to prevent a spread of the fire, and runoff from the water used to fight the blaze was being contained onsite. 

A state-operated, temporary-located monitor site in St. Rose has not detected any chemicals, Langley said, and additional monitoring in the community by DEQ employees also found no evidence of chemicals. 

IMTT also brought in a contractor to perform off-site air monitoring, and DEQ employees have asked for those monitoring results and will review them, Langley said. 

A spokesperson for St. Charles Parish said smoke from the fire was drifting offsite, but away from populated areas and was not believed to be a threat to the public. 

LaPlante said IMTT officials are monitoring air quality near the facility and also don’t anticipate off-site impacts. “The company is investigating the cause of the fire,” he said. 

A smaller fire involving a petroleum fuel oil piping manifold at the company’s storage terminal hit the facility in June 2022 and was put out in about 30 minutes. No injuries or pollution was reported as a result of that fire. 

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About Mary Weyand 14613 Articles
Mary founded Scoop Tour with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research. With ample knowledge about the Automobile industry, she also contributes her knowledge for the Automobile section of the website.

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