LOS ANGELES – The recent accidents and leaks from a mounting number of antiquated hazardous sites such as the Exxon-Mobile refinery, West Texas Fertilizer Co., and So. Cal Gas Co. in Porter Ranch, have underscored the regulatory deficiencies in the protection of public safety. Another vivid example of this has been endured for decades at a 25 million gallon “liquefied petroleum gas storage facility” in San Pedro, a location prime for disaster.
Literally on the back doorsteps of residents and schools, and sitting within the only actual “earthquake rupture zone” in the LA Harbor region, this 43 yr. old facility, is now owned by infamous Plains All American Pipeline operating under the name “Rancho LPG LLC”. The facility has filed a mandatory “worst case blast radius” report to the EPA. For years, the company has contended that “one” of their “two” 12.5 million gallon refrigerated butane gas tanks has a blast radius of ½ mile. That blast radius is the “same” as a 30,000 gallon rail car of butane. The true blast radius for 12.5 million gallons of this gas is over 3 MILES!
The Environmental Protection Agency has accepted this severely minimized blast radius because it gives “safety mitigation” credit to the company for an impound basin under the misguided notion that it would capture the liquid contents from a tank rupture.
That premise is patently FALSE! Butane gas is only “liquid” under tank refrigeration. Once the liquid gas escapes a tank and is exposed to ambient air temperature, it begins to rapidly “vaporize” over 220 times its volume as a liquid! What that means is that less than 1% of the contents of a tank would be captured in the basin. The rapid expansion of the gas causes a “blast wave” and the vaporous gas (heavier than air) seeks the lowest levels until it is ignited by something as simple as an electric spark! LPG fires cannot be extinguished by water, and must simply “burn themselves out”.
This storage facility abuts the large Phillips 66 refinery to the north and sits within ¼ mile of the Port of LA’s marine oil terminals. The potential for disaster is overwhelming in scope. The RANCHO LPG plant was built by destroying a TONGVA VILLAGE SACRED SITE AREA ,TATTN is one of the lead petition parties/ petitioner .
The EPA MUST seriously address the woefully deficient system that they currently employ and inform the public of their jeopardy. Too many of our citizens lives depend on it!
The TONGVA ANCESTRAL TERRITORIAL TRIBAL NATION petition to the EPA can be found here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/3k1kea9fahldnmx/AAC7eAIBxquPWjr8MPdWD5Xta?dl=0
Contact: Attorney Anthony Patchett (818) 243-8863
John Tommy Rosas Tribal Administrator Tribal Litigator
San Pedro Peninsula Homeowners United, INC. (310) 251-7075