press release

Chevron Press Release - Fire Contained At Chevron Refinery In Richmond

SAN FRANCISCO, March 25, 1999 - Chevron issued the following statement at 9 p.m. PST today:

  • The fire resulting from an explosion at the Chevron refinery in Richmond, Calif., at about 2:30 p.m. today was isolated and contained at approximately 4:30 p.m. An "all clear" was declared at 8:37 p.m., ending the emergency response phase of the incident. Fire fighters are continuing to spray water on the remaining hot spots, which are expected to smolder overnight.
  • The explosion occurred in a hydrocracking unit, a processing unit that converts gas oil into gasoline and jet fuel.
  • All 30 employees who work in that unit have been accounted for without injury.
  • Two Chevron firefighters sustained minor injuries; both were treated and released. Chevron's fire department personnel immediately responded to the fire and called in assistance from the Richmond Fire Department and six other response organizations.
  • After the explosion, Chevron immediately activated its emergency response procedures and notified area agencies.
  • Chevron industrial hygienists sampled the air and toured the perimeter of the facility and surrounding community during the incident. Initial indications are that there were no harmful substances in the air.
  • The hydrocracking unit in the refinery has been shut down. All other unaffected areas of the refinery are operating.
  • Cause of the explosion is being fully investigated.
  • At this point, Chevron does not expect this incident to have a significant effect on its ability to supply petroleum products to its customers.


The Chevron Richmond refinery, which employs more than 1,450 employees and more than 100 contractors, is one of the largest refineries on the West Coast with a 240,000 barrel-per-day capacity.

Updated: March 1999