Pollution
Humain
Environnement
Economique

At 6 am, the morning shift inside a conventional power plant detected hydrocarbons in the discharge channel leading to the sea. The supervisor ordered closure of the valves downstream of the channel in order to contain the pollution. The lift pump on the sump collecting drippings from diesel generators did not shut off at its low level but instead continued to operate until its decoupling by field operators on duty. A centrifuge also malfunctioned and released massive amounts of fuel oil. These two anomalies caused a major influx of hydrocarbons into the settlement basins, whose saturated separators allowed pollutants to flow towards the processing basins and into the discharge channel. None of these anomalies were detected in the control room since both of the monitoring booths continuously measuring hydrocarbon content in the channel had been inoperable since 15th September. The plant operator repaired all defective component, audited the industrial water treatment installation and ran an awareness building campaign aimed at the entire workforce.