CPC-Shell Explosion Kills One

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An explosion occurred two weeks ago during deconstruction of CPC-Shell Lubricants base oils plant in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, killing one worker. The company said work has stopped until investigations are completed.

The plant, which is part of CPCs Kaohsiung refinery complex, is operated by CPC-Shell Lubricants, a joint venture between Taiwans state-owned petroleum company, CPC Corp. (which owns 49 percent), and Shell (51 percent).

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The explosion occurred on the morning of March 9. According to a local media report, the employee died on the way to Navy General Hospital.

The employee worked for CPC-Shell Lubricants contractor, Taiwan Metal Technology, which purchased the facilities and had been moving equipment from the site when the explosion occurred.

The cause of the explosion is still unknown, CPC-Shell Lubricants President Eric Kuan, told Lube Report Asia. As the investigation is ongoing, we are unable to give more detail regarding this incident, he added. The accident should never have happened, and CPC-Shell is investigating the cause of it.

The joint venture had asafe and no-harm recordin its years of operation before the shutdown [in September last year], he continued. The closure of the joint venture plant is in line with the announced government decision to close the Kaohsiung oil refinery complex in southern Taiwan by the end of 2015.

CPC will move its 5,400 barrels per day base oils plant in Kaohsiung closer to its Dalin crude oil refinery in two phases. It will relocate API Group I facilities by 2017, then expand capacity with a new Group II plant.

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