State-owned China Petroleum and Chemical Corp. or Sinopec’s 160,000 b/d Jiujiang refinery in central Jiangxi province has been operating at a reduced rate since a blast at its No 1 gasoil hydrotreater on Monday, two Sinopec refinery sources said Friday.
“The refinery only shut some affected refining units rather than completely shutting down, but their operating rate has been reduced since the accident,” one Sinopec refinery source said.
Operations at the affected units were not expected to resume for some time, the source added.
The blast at a hydrogenation feedstock buffer tank at the No 1 gasoil hydrotreater sparked a fire Monday afternoon that left two dead and one injured, according to the Sinopec report and a circular posted on the local government’s official website.
Four major refining units were shut after the blast: The No 1 gasoil hydrotreater, as well as a jet fuel hydrotreater, No 1 PSA hydrogen production unit and No 2 gasoline and gasoil hydrotreater, according to an accident report obtained from Sinopec.
Connections between those units and other units have been cut, according to the report.
As a result of the reduction in output, around half the oil product supply to the local market will be met by Sinopec’s neighboring 23 million mt/year Zhenhai refinery in Zhejiang province until the Jiujiang refinery returns to full operations, a source with the refinery said.