Chemical leak, fire reported at Marathon Petroleum refinery in Garyville; evacuations lifted

Fire at Marathon refinery in Garyville 5
Fire at Marathon refinery in Garyville 5
Published: Aug. 25, 2023 at 8:34 AM CDT|Updated: Aug. 25, 2023 at 2:23 PM CDT
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GARYVILLE, La. (WVUE) - A storage tank containing a flammable liquid leaked and ignited, sending fireballs and massive plumes of smoke high into the Friday (Aug. 25) morning sky in Garyville.

A spokesperson for Marathon Petroleum says naptha leaked from a storage tank and caught fire in an area surrounding the tank.

Flames produced thick, black smoke that blanketed the St. John Parish sky for hours between 7 a.m. until the fire appeared to be extinguished just before 2 p.m.

The spokesperson said that the release and fire were contained to the refinery property and that there were no injuries.

Residents within a two-mile radius of the refinery were ordered to evacuate as a precautionary measure. That order was lifted around 2:20 p.m.

Riverside Academy halted classes and evacuated as a precaution.

Please see below statement from Marathon Petroleum: Marathon Petroleum personnel and local emergency responders are...

Posted by St. John the Baptist Parish on Friday, August 25, 2023

According to the New Jersey Dept. of Health, a state with a large chemical plant industry, naphtha is a term to describe a class of hydrocarbon mixtures obtained from distilling petroleum. It can be breathed in or passed through the skin and cause headaches, nausea, and vomiting.

An investigation into the release and fire is ongoing.

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