NEW ORLEANS – The Louisiana Bucket Brigade recently spoke with several members of the United Steelworkers who work at some of the state’s refineries and chemical plants about their experiences during hurricanes and tropical storms.
They shared stories of the chaos at these facilities, when refinery managers wait until the last minute to launch emergency procedures, or just keep the facility operating. Their stories mirror the concerns behind the recommendations in our June 1 Storms Report.
Here's a quote from Jordy Richardson, USW President, Local 620, Occidental Chemical Corporation in Geismar:
“For (Hurricane) Hugo, they ran that plant until it shut down for low gas pressure and our people had to work in it without services, backups or just normal things like food, water to flush a commode, air conditioning – it was a mess. They said they had a plan but we never saw them follow it. They should have a plan and safely shut down each facility when a certain mile range (for the eye of the hurricane) is met and it should not be left to the discretion of the companies.”
Read more workers' stories at LABB's blog.
The Louisiana Bucket Brigade is an environmental health and justice organization supporting neighborhoods’ use of grassroots action to create informed, sustainable communities free from industrial pollution.