Air Quality in East Bay Safe: Study

Wednesday, Aug 8, 2012  |  Updated 6:19 AM PDT
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Air Quality in East Bay Safe: Study

Jodi Hernandez

Chevron fire chief speaks after major refinery fire.

The air quality in western Contra Costa County has been determined safe after test results for 23 petroleum-related pollutants were analyzed Tuesday after a fire at a Chevron refinery in Richmond on Monday night,  according to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.

The air quality has been tested and determined not to be a  significant health concern, with potentially toxic pollutants found to be well under levels that could impact sensitive populations, the air district  said in a statement. 

The air district inspectors collected samples of the air and  tested them in the district's lab. Inspectors announced Tuesday afternoon  that pollution levels were found to be well below the federal health standards.

The Contra Costa County Health Services tests which track hydrogen  sulfate and volatile organic compounds both came up negative, said a health  services spokeswoman.

The three-alarm fire broke out at 4 Crude Unit at about 6:30 p.m.  and was burning strong before it was contained just before 11 p.m.

More than 500 people - more than 300 at Doctors Medical Center in  San Pablo and 200-plus at Kaiser Permanente in Richmond - were treated for  respiratory issues.

 

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