Wyo. oil refinery where 3 hurt was cited recently

Associated Press Modified: May 11, 2012 at 5:00 pm •  Published: May 11, 2012

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — State regulators recently issued three safety citations, including fire prevention and fire equipment maintenance violations, against the Sinclair oil refinery in Wyoming where a flash fire this week injured four workers.

Two fires occurred at the refinery while a routine safety inspection was being conducted last year, Ken Masters, compliance supervisor with the state Occupational Safety and Health Administration, said Friday.

A spokesman for Salt Lake City-based Sinclair Oil Corp. was out of the office Friday and not available for comment.

The state OSHA is investigating a flash fire that occurred Tuesday at Sinclair's refinery about five miles east of Rawlins.

Three workers were injured and remained hospitalized at North Colorado Medical Center's Western States Burn Center in Greeley, Colo. Their condition improved to fair Friday, according to a medical center official. A fourth worker was treated at Memorial Hospital of Carbon County in Rawlins and released Tuesday.

Masters said he couldn't speculate on when OSHA's investigation will be completed. New citations against Sinclair could be issued as a result of the investigation.

Sinclair has released little information about the fire but has said that it also is investigating and that its main concern is for the welfare of its injured workers.

The three citations issued in March listed serious violations with paperwork, maintenance, training and fire prevention. The state has proposed more than $45,000 in fines, which Sinclair can appeal and negotiate with the state.