The Texas City Oil Refinery Explosion

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In 1908, BP was founded under the name Anglo-Persian Oil Company. In 1954 they changed their name to British Petroleum and merged with Amoco in 1998. (BP Public Website, 2010) “The Texas City Refinery is BP’s largest and most complex oil refinery... It was owned and operated by Amoco prior to the merger of BP and Amoco.” (Michael P. Broadribb, 2006) Throughout their history, there have been a number of accidents that have been caused by negligence and disregard of safety precautions. Unfortunately many lives have been cut short or seriously injured as a result. My research will focus on the 2005 Texas City Oil Refinery Explosion. I will attempt to look into the ethical implications that surrounded this disaster before and after the event and suggest what BP could have done to prevent the incident then and in the future. What Happened? “On March 23, 2005, at 1:20 pm, the BP Texas City Refinery suffered one of the worst industrial disasters in recent U.S. history. Explosions and fires killed 15 people and injured another 180, alarmed the community, and resulted in financial losses exceeding $1.5 billion.” (U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, 2007) There are many small and big decisions and oversights that led to the incident. Underneath all the specific actions or inaction is a blatant disregard for addressing safety violations and procedures that had been pointed out to BP even years before this event. The use of outdated equipment and budget cuts also
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