After the ITC fire, 'wrist-slap fines' aren't enough
The preliminary report from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board during its investigation of the dayslong petrochemical fire in March 2019 at the Intercontinental Terminals Company tank farm in Deer Park has concluded that the facility lacked a remote emergency shutoff valve and an alarm system.
It's one reason why, the Houston Chronicle's editorial board writes, that the company, fined only $65,000 since 2009 for many environmental violations, "should not get off so easily this time."
The editorial board writes: "Petrochemical companies that habitually trample over rules that help keep Texas’ air and water clean ... need to know the days of wrist-slap fines that can be written off as a cost of doing business in this state are over. It’s time for Texas to make polluters feel it where it hurts when they hurt our environment."
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