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Marathon Refinery Dust Release

Photo of Benny Agosto

On January 13, over 216,000 pounds of a sand like substance was released into the air from the Marathon Petroleum refinery in Texas City. The release occurred around 8 am in the morning as a result of a valve in a cracking unit that malfunctioned in the plant. Residents and business owners of Bayou Vista found their cars and houses covered in dust from this release.

After numerous complaints from local residents Marathon has agreed to pay for the cleanup. Last week it was reported that over 700 vehicles were washed and more than 124 residences and businesses were cleaned. Marathon contends that the sand like substance is primarily made up of aluminum oxide and silica and probably poses no health risk. An official report on the release is expected to be completed by January 27th by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

This is not the first time that the Marathon plant in Texas City has had malfunctions which result in the release of potentially hazardous material. There have been ten reported releases from the Marathon plant alone in the past five years. In 2012 there were seven releases. Most of these releases have been on a smaller scale, and it appears that the release on January 13 has affected the most people.

Benny Agosto, Jr. is a partner at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Friend in Houston, Texas. For over 65 years, Abraham Watkins has successfully represented injured people and families who fall victim to catastrophes. Our attorneys have the knowledge, experience and resources necessary to obtain just compensation their clients. For more information, please contact the office of Benny Agosto, Jr. at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Friend, by letter at 800 Commerce Street, Houston, Texas 77002, or by phone at 713-396-3964.

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