There Must be 222 Ways to Leave Your Skin Behind at Amuay

Thanks to the miracle that is this leak, we now know that a report dated May this year by RJG Risk Engineering’s Roger Gregory noted there were 222 accidents of various types at the CRP last year, including around 100 fires and nine “Notable Incidents”. Out of the 222 incidents, 173 were never actually investigated at…

An Exhaustive Investigation

This morning, President Chávez promised an exhaustive investigation into the causes of last night’s fatal blast at Amuay Refinery. The sun hasn’t even set yet, and that investigation is already exhausted: the Paraguana Refining Complex’s Head of Refining has already ruled out deferred maintenance as contributing in any way to the accident. So, it’s good…

The Cadena that Wasn’t

For once, today, Venezuela faced a situation where a Cadena Nacional would have been entirely appropriate, even welcome. Facing a genuine national disaster, people naturally turn to their leader for explanation, for guidance, for leadership, for solace. Handling events like last night’s is why Cadenas are supposed to exist in the first place, ¡coño! And…

Amuay Daylight Photos Start to Emerge – Yowza!

Last night’s huge blast at Amuay Refinery in Paraguaná is quickly turning into an object lesson in the impossibility of controlling information in the Twitter era. As the private media softball the story for fear of retribution and official spokesmen lamely repeat that ‘everything is under control’, the real story as told by people on the…

Amuay: Not your run-of-the-mill refinery screw up

Last night’s explosion and fire in Amuay – the larger bit of the mammoth Paraguana Refining Complex – was big enough to wake up most of Punto Fijo. It’s easy to get jaded about stories of PDVSA accidents, but this was on an entirely different scale from the Situation-Normal-All-F’d-Up PDVSA status quo. Initial reports talked about…