November 21st, 2022
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
Explosions and a large fire erupted on November 7th at a chemical plant near the port in Brunswick, Georgia. The fire sent a large plume of thick smoke into the air. In addition to firefighters, Hazmat (hazardous materials) crews from Savannah, Georgia and Jacksonville, Florida are among the host of outside agencies who have converged at the port to assist local firefighters with the incident. The plant and 100 households within a 1-mile radius of the plant were evacuated. All within three miles of the plant were advised to shelter in place.
“A Code Red has been issued for northeast Camden County — the Hickory Bluff area and the area east of I-95 Exit 26 area,” law enforcement officials said. “People are being urged to evacuate because of smoke and fumes from the chemical fire.”
The plant is operated by a company based in Germany that is a global supplier of perfumes, cosmetics, food and beverages, pharmaceuticals, nutritional supplements, and pet foods. The chemical at the plant that continued burning Monday afternoon is volatile chemical called hydrogen peroxide pinene. It is one of the main chemicals used in used in the production of fragrances.
A Glenn County official said heat from the fire had caused three metal tanks containing hazardous chemicals to explode in a likely BLEVE event, prompting firefighters to back away. There were 1.3 million gallons of water on site and tankers are restoring the water supply. Firefighters used water, foam, and deluge systems to battle the fire.
This fire is similar to the August 24th fire at a chemical plant in Madison Village, Ohio.
A BLEVE is a boiling liquid expanding vapor explosion of a tank or vessel containing ignitable liquids. A BLEVE may be avoided with automatic fire protection (water or foam-water) for tanks and vessels containing ignitable liquids.
Contact Risk Logic to perform a property loss prevention survey of your plant and to analyze the storage and processing of ignitable liquids using National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard 30 and other applicable NFPA standards as well as FM Global Data Sheets 7-29, 7-32 and 7-88.