Sunday, August 14, 2005

Endless BP Accidents: Terrorist Plot?

BP Amoco refineries seem to be having so many accidents that I don't even report them all anymore. Some might say there's a problem with BP's "safety culture" or their management safety systems.

According to the Galveston Daily News, the FBI suspects there may be more going on here than traditional money-saving, life-threatening short cuts, corner cutting, staff reductions and general negligence.
You don’t have to be a conspiracy buff to think the recent spate of incidents at BP facilities was maybe a little much to comfortably call coincidence.

The FBI’s not going near that, but did confirm it was conducting what it called routine investigations of the incidents.

Bureau officials said there was no evidence or indication that any of the incidents might involve deliberate acts, and that such probes had become routine since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

BP’s Texas City oil refinery and a subsidiary’s chemical plant at Chocolate Bayou have been at the center of six large incidents in the past 15 months.

Those include explosions in three separate cases, one of which had mass casualties. They also include a pipe rupture that killed two workers and severely injured a third, a late night leak of Gasoil that put a city under a shelter-in-place order and a large explosion and fire at the Innovene Chemical plant.

Special Agent Al Tribble said the bureau was looking into the incidents to see if there is a connection. He said the agency was involved not so much because there appears to be a link or evidence of wrongdoing, but because of the climate that has existed since the terror attacks of 9/11.

And it's true. Ever since 9/11, for example, the first agency on the scene -- even before OSHA or the US Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, is ATF: The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives -- to rule out terrorism.

OK, you can laugh, but I think there's something here we can use. For example, isn't it possible that:

  • Repeal of the ergonomics standard which halted the battle atainst the epidemic of back injuries facing health care workers is really a terrorist plot to undermine our health car system in preparation for a bioterrorism attack?

  • The failure of OSHA, the EPA or Congress to ease the process of updating archaic standards toxic industrial chemicals is really a terrorist plot to spread cancer and other diseases through the American public, weakening our health and resolve?
I'm sure there are other examples. But I think the FBI should get busy investigating these plots and transport everyone responsible down to Gitmo.