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TPC outlines demolition process, increased noise

PORT NECHES — TPC Group has begun the demolition phase of the recovery of the Port Neches site, alerting residents in the vicinity there will be increased activity and the potential for increased noise levels during daytime hours.

Sara Cronin, media relations with TPC, said the demolition phase will last several months and includes the removal of two standing towers, five fallen towers ad two spheres.

“The first phase will involve bringing down two standing towers and is expected to be completed by November,” Cronin said.

“TPC Group anticipates the second phase of the demolition project to start in the fourth quarter of 2020. It will include the removal of an additional six standing towers. The third phase of the demolition project will remove all remaining compromised equipment to ground level.”

For residents, they may see or hear movement of heavy equipment onsite, including large trucks and cranes. Noise associated with the demolition activity will be limited to the daytime hours, Cronin said.

Initial activity, she continued, includes moving material and clearing roadways inside the facility to prepare the work area. Wet methods such as spraying will be used to suppress dust impact to the area.

According to information from TPC, the company continues to conduct weekly testing of the plant alarm system every Wednesday at noon. This is only a system test and there are no off-site impacts. In the event of an emergency onsite, TPC Group will use the STAN and social media.

Port Neches Mayor Glenn Johnson, who lives near the facility, said he has not noted any additional noise as of Thursday. Johnson is familiar with the general demolition process and has an idea of what to anticipate.

Almost nine months have passed since the explosions at the TPC site. De-inventory of materials is greater than 90 percent complete and terminal operations are underway as part of a three-phased start-up to serve current and future customers and supplier needs, Cronin said.

TPC Group is continuing to work on re-establishing systems to fully expand the company’s ability to serve industry customers. These activities include:

  • Restoration of site utilities capabilities, including nitrogen, natural gas, permanent electrical power and potable water.
  • Evaluation and complete assessments of tanks, piping and equipment in the impacted area also continues to determine equipment preservation and restoration strategies.
  • Restoration of terminal capabilities required to support industrial neighbors and terminal capabilities requiring dock, tank farm, rail and pipeline operations.

Work on efforts to rebuild are also continuing, which is expected to take up to five years before resumption of production will begin, Cronin said.

Air monitoring coverage will continue, conducted by contracted environmental response specialists and includes four stationary monitors at the fence line and eight stationary monitors inside the fence line.

“The radius of community monitoring is focused on the site perimeter,” she said. “Additional monitoring teams will remain ready to respond in the community should there be a need.”