With over 160 ethanol plants in operation and 43 plants under construction the hazards of explosions and fires are omnipresent. Since July 2007, six reported ethanol plant explosions and fires have taken place in the United States. Last week the Anderson Corp. plant in Sheridan Township, Michigan exploded in the dryer area causing injuries and damage to the building.
Last December the distillers grain dryer was destroyed at the Pine Lake Corn Processors facility in Steamboat, Rock Iowa causing millions of dollars in damage. Luckily no injuries or fatalities occurred. The contractors at the Princess Anne, Maryland GreenLight Biofuels biodiesel plant were not so lucky less than two months ago when one fatality and one injury occurred after an explosion while adding a methane line during hot work.
Production and refining of ethanol and biodiesel is a new industry and will require that the owners and operators implement the same safety production procedures as the petrochemical refining industry
The current learning curve is now proving to be very costly in human lives and adverse economic effects to the community.
Ethanol Plant Explosions and Fires Google Map
Tuesday, July 1, 2008