An update is expected today on the closure of LyondellBasell’s Equistar Chemicals polypropylene plant in Lake Charles late last week following a lightning strike, S&P Global Platts reports.
The lightning strike occurred July 13. Local television station KPLC-TV reported heavy black smoke from two of the facility’s flares. Jim Rock of the Lake Area Industry Alliance told the station a lightning strike knocked out both LyondellBasell’s power center and its tie-in to Entergy, causing the plant to lose electricity and steam.
“This unforeseen event caused utilities outages and a shutdown of all plant production lines,” the company said in a letter to customers obtained by S&P Global Platts. “We are currently evaluating the overall impact to the plant and are working towards restart; however, at this time, we do not have a complete timeline for startup.”
An update on operations is expected by close of business today.
The plant has nameplate capacity totaling 509,000 million tons per year of polypropylene, according to S&P Global Platts Analytics data.