Saturday, February 18th 2017 marked the two-year anniversary of the near-catastrophic explosion at the Torrance Refinery (known then as the ExxonMobil Refinery), and over 400 community organizers (including DAAC youth, shown in photos below) marched in protest against the continued use of toxic modified hydroflouric acid (MHF) at the facility. Earlier that morning a fire was reported at the refinery, adding more fuel to the demonstration. With signs reading “Ban MHF Acid,” “Student Safety Ban MHF,” and “Southbay Lives Matter,” community members of all ages got their message out that the time is now for SCAQMD to implement a proposed ban on MHF.
The explosion that occurred two years ago Saturday could have resulted in the large scale release of the toxic chemical, potentially killing thousands if inhaled. The incident injured many workers on site and the plant was closed for a year. Since this time an investigation into the refinery’s use of MHF has yet to be completed, and the facility is only one of two in the entire state that uses MHF.
Many thanks to those who stood up for this issue, and continue to take a stand against the necessary and reckless use of MHF at the refinery.