Explosion and Fire at Iwakuni-Ohtake Works

April 22, 2012
Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.

Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. (Toshikazu Tanaka, President & CEO) with its Head Office in Tokyo, Japan announced that at 2:15 am on April 22nd an explosion and fire occurred at production facilities for resorcinol (an adhesive agent for wood and tires) at its Iwakuni-Ohtake Works.
As a result of this accident, one person died and several others were injured. Mitsui Chemicals extends heartfelt sympathy and sincerest apologies to all persons and families affected by the accident and to all our stakeholders.

Currently available information is as follows (April 22, 19:00):

1. Address and facilities involved in the accident:

Mitsui Chemicals Iwakuni-Ohtake Works Resorcinol Plant
1-2, Waki 6-chome, Waki-cho, Kuga-gun, Yamaguchi 740-0061

2. Time and date

2:15 am April 22, 2012

3. Timeline

April 222:15Explosion at resorcinol plant
Fire spreads to cymene plant and utility piping rack
8:05Explosion at resorcinol plant tank
17:15Fire undercontrol at all plants

4. Casualties/Injured

1 dead, 21 injured (details as follows)

Community residents:10 injured
JX Nippon Oil & Energy
(adjacent refinery)
cooperating company employees:
2 injured
Mitsui Chemicals employees:1 dead, 7 injured (2 seriously)
Cooperating company employees:2 injured

5. Damage to buildings/homes

Community buildings/homes:267 (mainly damage to windows/glass)
Works buildings:14 plants and extensive damage from blast to windows and slate roofing and sidings

6. Other effects on community

There is no report of leakage of hazardous substances or materials at this time.
Premises warehouses store catalyst waste which includes radioactive material. This material is stored in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. Storage facilities are over 500 meters from the affected area and there has been no report of changes in either containers or radiation measurements as compared with those prior to the accident.

7. Effect on product supply

Unknown at this time.

8. Causes

Causes of the accident are under investigation by authorities. Mitsui Chemicals will fully cooperate with authorities in the investigation.
Following the accident, the company formed task forces to respond to community resident concerns and implement appropriate safety measures.
The cause of the explosion and preventive measures will be announced as soon as such information becomes available.


Explosion and Fire at Iwakuni-Ohtake Works (PDF:9KB)PDF