Shell fined $80,000 for Bukom fire

SINGAPORE - Shell was fined $80,000 for its role in a fire that broke out at its Pulau Bukom Refinery on Sep 28, 2011.

The company had earlier pleaded guilty to failing to take reasonably practicable measures to ensure workers' safety on Oct 9, 2012.

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said the fire was the largest refinery fire since 1988.

MOM's investigations showed that the fire started in the course of the open de-oiling of naphtha - a highly flammable petroleum product - from a pipeline that ran through a pump house at the refinery.

Shell had not ensured the safety of the open system of de-oiling of naphtha and its process.

Emphasising the importance of safety, Mr Go Heng Huat, Deputy Director, OSHD, said: “MOM reminds the industry that they should proactively review their risk assessment and work procedures to ensure the safety of workers, as part of good workplace safety practices."

Shell could have been fined a maximum of $500,000 under Section 11(a) of the Workplace Safety and Health Act (Chapter 354A).

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