Natural gas release contained at Lawe-lawe terminal on East Kalimantan, Indonesia
Balikpapan, 6 May 2003 - Unocal Indonesia Company announced today that it has resumed normal operations following a temporary gas release that occurred at Lawe-Lawe Terminal near Balikpapan, East Kalimantan, at 20:00 hrs on the evening of May 5. The incident was quickly contained. The company has formed an investigation team to determine the cause of the release and is taking remedial actions to deal with the impact of the incident.
The incident has been reported to the Executive Agency for Upstream Oil and Gas Business Activities (BPMIGAS), the Regional Environmental Impact Management Agency (Bapedalda), and the local security officials involved in handling the situation.
Shortly after the gas release, several people in Girimukti village, Penajam Paser Utara regency, near the Lawe-lawe Oil and Gas terminal in the operational area of Unocal Indonesia Company complained of health problems including dizziness, nausea, and shortness of breath caused by inhaling the petroleum gas vapors.
Unocal's medical team provided immediate medical care to the local residents who experienced these health problems. A total of 28 people were treated and all but one were subsequently released. One person was kept for observation in a Balikpapan hospital as a precaution. Conditions in the local area were back to normal by 23:00 hours on May 5, with no trace of gas evident and no environmental damage.
Unocal Indonesia Company has apologized to the public, and particularly to the local community of Girimukti village, for this unfortunate incident, and is working together with local community leaders to mitigate the impact of this unexpected event.
Updated: May 2003