March 2, 2020 / 2:37 PM / a month ago

Exxon Baton Rouge, La. refinery restarting after February 12 fire: sources

FILE PHOTO: A sign is seen in front of the Exxonmobil Baton Rouge Refinery in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, November 6, 2015. REUTERS/Lee Celano/File Photo

HOUSTON (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil Corp restarted the largest crude distillation unit (CDU) at its 502,500-barrel-per-day (bpd) Baton Rouge, Louisiana, refinery on Sunday for the first time since a Feb. 12 fire, said sources familiar with plant operations.

Exxon began restarting the second-largest CDU at the Baton Rouge refinery on Monday, the sources said.

The Feb. 12 fire knocked out the natural gas supply that fuels the boilers on the refinery’s four CDUs including the 210,000-bpd PSLA-10 CDU, which restarted on Sunday, and the 110,000-bpd PSLA-9 CDU, which began restarting on Monday.

Exxon also restarted a coker over the weekend, the sources said.

After restarting PSLA-9, Exxon plans to complete restarting the 90,000-bpd PSLA-7 CDU and its twin, the 90,000-bpd PSLA-8, according to the sources.

The Feb. 12 fire destroyed a natural gas pipeline supplying the CDUs. The CDUs do the primary breakdown of crude oil into hydrocarbon feedstocks for all other production units at the refinery.

Reporting by Erwin Seba; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Jonathan Oatis

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