Unified Command ends TPC explosion coordination

Published 4:44 pm Thursday, January 30, 2020

The command structure in place following the TPC explosion in Port Neches is coming to an end, officials announced Thursday afternoon.

Unified Command, under the direction of Jefferson County Judge Jeff Branick, and comprised of Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Jefferson County Office of Emergency Management and TPC Group, announced it is standing down the interagency command structure following the achievement of several key milestones.

The effort was formed Nov. 27 to coordinate response efforts at the site.

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“Our focus has always been on community and site safety in protection of health and the environment, and those objectives continue to be met,” Branick said. “My sincere thanks and appreciation go to the first responders who have dedicated themselves to our community’s safety and protection throughout the response.”

Branick said the TPC Group is a highly skilled and dedicated team managing the response efforts and has demonstrated capability and competency.

“The stand down of Unified Command does not indicate the event is over; however, it is a major milestone in our response to further secure the facility,” said Troy Monk, emergency operations manager for TPC Group.

“The work we are doing today to de-inventory materials from the site and further secure the facility is setting the foundation for site recovery. We have appreciated the assistance from our partner agencies throughout this response effort.”

Milestones achieved:

  • Nearly 50 percent of the materials in tanks and equipment onsite has been transferred offsite, including the completion of transfer of high concentration 1,3 butadiene.
  • Extensive air monitoring has detected no actionable levels of VOCs or 1,3 butadiene in the community for more than 45 days.
  • Water monitoring has detected no exceedance of screening values for drinking water and surface water.

TPC Group air monitoring coverage, conducted by contracted environmental response specialists, will continue to include 10 stationary monitors at the fence line, 17 stationary monitors inside the fence line and 15 roaming air monitors inside the fence line.

TPC Group will continue to manage inquiries via the official response website at portnechesresponse.com, as well as through established social media channels on Facebook at facebook.com/PortNechesUC and Twitter (@PortNechesUC).

Residents are also encouraged to register for updates from the Southeast Texas Alerting Network (STAN). Call 1-877-843-7826 (toll-free) anytime to hear important alerts and notifications or visit thestan.com to register for notifications.