CSB Team to Reach Site of Utah Refinery Fire Today

A four-member investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board is expected to arrive this afternoon at the Woods Cross, Utah, site of a refinery fire on Monday that seriously burned four workers. The team will be headed by CSB Investigator Supervisor Donald Holmstrom, CSB announced.

The Deseret News reported today that hospitalized workers Robert Benoit, Alex Bloomfield, and Phillip McSwain were listed in serious condition and Timothy Harter was listed in critical condition last evening. Harter and Benoit work for a contractor, while the other two work for Silver Eagle Refinery Inc. This plant processes 10,500 barrels per day into gasoline and diesel fuel and is the smallest refinery in Utah, according to the newspaper, which said Silver Eagle Refinery Inc. was cited for 10 serious violations in 2005, two serious violations in 2004, and one in 2002 by the Utah Occupational Safety and Health Division. In all since 2002, 23 citations have been issued for alleged violations at the refinery, where four other fires have been reported since 2003, according to the article.

Eighty firefighters worked until 4 a.m. Tuesday local time to extinguish the fire, which followed an explosion at the refinery and caused about 100 homes in the area to be evacuated, according to the newspaper.

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