Oil Refinery

Tesoro Explosion
7:09 am
Wed July 9, 2014

Federal Investigation Seeks To Find Accountability In Explosion

Inspectors examine a Tesoro oil refinery after an explosion.
Credit John Ryan / KUOW

It was Washington state’s worst industrial accident in nearly 50 years.

“Skagit 911. What’s your emergency?” “I’m trying to find out what's going on at the refinery.” “You know, we don’t know at this point, sir.” “Well, all I can tell you is I live two and a half miles from it, and the explosion was hard enough to rock my house, and there’s one hell of a fire going there.”

That explosion in 2010 at the Tesoro refinery in Anacortes killed seven workers.

Four years later, no one has been held publicly accountable for the seven deaths. As John Ryan reported, state efforts to penalize Tesoro have stalled. To improve worker safety, the federal government is wielding a tool it rarely uses: criminal prosecution of one of the nation’s largest corporations.

Here’s John Ryan with part two of our investigation.

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Tesoro Explosion
7:43 am
Tue July 8, 2014

In Refinery Explosion, Who's Accountable?

Charred towers and machinery at the Tesoro Corp. refinery in Anacortes, Washington, following the blast.
Credit Ted S. Warren / Associated Press

It's been four years since a deadly explosion at an oil refinery shook the town of Anacortes, Washington. The question of who's responsible for seven workers' deaths still hasn't been answered fully. Refinery owner Tesoro agreed to pay millions to families of the dead, but the company is fighting accusations that it willfully put its workers in harm’s way. With multiple legal proceedings continuing to swirl around the accident, it remains unclear whether anyone will be held accountable for the human cost of Tesoro gasoline. John Ryan brings us part one of this KUOW investigation.

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Fuel Costs
3:59 pm
Tue February 21, 2012

Higher Gas Prices Expected After Refinery Fire

Northwest motorists could be paying more for fuel after the fire at the Cherry Point Refinery.
Photo credit: Wikimedia User ComputerGuy890100 Wikimedia Commons

The Cherry Point refinery in Washington usually produces 225,000 barrels of gas per day. Owners, BP, says the plant could resume production soon. But Marie Dodds of Triple A Oregon and Idaho, thinks prices could increase as a result.

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Northwest Regional News
3:52 pm
Tue January 31, 2012

Western Wash. Oil Refineries Face Possible Strike

Sign making at a United Steelworkers local in Ferndale, WA.
Courtesy of USW Local 12590 Northwest News Network

Bargaining is going down to the wire on new labor contracts at three of the five big oil refineries in the Northwest. Union members have been told to prepare to strike as early as Wednesday. Correspondent Tom Banse has more details.

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Our Northwest Economy
10:20 am
Tue April 6, 2010

Tesoro And State Investigating Oil Refinery Explosion

Oil refiner Tesoro is investigating the deadly Friday morning explosion in Anacortes. But the company does not yet have an explanation for the incident. The blast at the oil refinery killed four Tesoro workers and gravely injured three others. Senior Vice President Lynn Westfall said in a press conference Friday that the explosion occurred near a heating and cooling area. 

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