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Explosion at LCCP confirmed by Sasol

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

On 13 January 2020, Sasol experienced an explosion and fire at its LCCP low-density polyethylene (LPDE) unit.

The fire was extinguished and all employees and contractors are safe and accounted for.

The new LPDE unit had not yet achieved beneficial operation as planned for in December 2019. The unit was in the final stages of commissioning and start-up when the incident occurred. The unit has been shut down and an investigation is underway to determine the cause of the incident, the extent of the damage and the resulting impact on the LDPE unit's beneficial operation schedule.

All other Lake Charles’ units and previously commissioned LCCP units, namely the ethane cracker, ethylene glycol/ethylene oxide and linear low-density polyethylene units, are unaffected and operating to plan. The ethane cracker has achieved nameplate capacity following the successful replacement of the acetylene reactor catalyst in the plant during December 2019.

The remaining three downstream units under construction to complete the integrated LCCP site, Ziegler alcohols and alumina, alcohol ethoxylates and Guerbet alcohols, are also unaffected and remain within cost and schedule as per Sasol’s previous guidance.

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