May 11, 2009 / 1:13 AM / 11 years ago

Exxon La. FCC upset happened during restart-sources

HOUSTON, May 10 (Reuters) - A Thursday malfunction of a gasoline-producing unit at Exxon Mobil Corp’s (XOM.N) 503,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Baton Rouge, Louisiana, refinery came during a restart after an unplanned shutdown earlier in the week, said sources familiar with refinery operations.

An Exxon spokesman declined to discuss specific unit operations at the Baton Rouge refinery, which is the second largest in the United States.

Exxon has said it will be able to meet its customer supply obligations.

Workers were attempting to get the 120,000 bpd fluidic catalytic cracking unit, one of three at the refinery, back to normal operations following an initial startup early on Thursday when an equipment failure is thought to have occurred, triggering a second shutdown, the sources said.

Nine workers were exposed to carbon monoxide in the Thursday upset and taken to area hospitals. All were released on Thursday.

The shut FCC underwent a four-week overhaul earlier this year and returned to service in early March.

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