White powder from refinery covers parts of El Dorado

By: KAKE News Email
By: KAKE News Email

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EL DORADO, Kan. — A malfunction at an oil refinery caused the release of white powder that covered much of El Dorado this morning.

Some residents contacted KAKE News after finding the powder covering their cars and homes. The El Dorado Fire Department was called out to investigate the white powder.

Captain Troy Jellison said, "We found it to be a very benign substance. It was a very neutral chemical. Then, we went out to talk to the refinery, found out it truly was a catalyst they use in cat unit. Really nothing to worry about."

The Frontier El Dorado Refinery vice president and refinery manager said a malfunction was discovered around 7:30 a.m. and within 30 minutes were able to fix the problem. The malfunction did cause the release of the baby powder-like material used in the the production of gasoline.

"We regret that we had the impact to the community but we will be out there working with the community and those impacted to get the situation cleaned up for them," said Skipp Kistler.

The fire department conducted a field tests and in their investigation concluded that the white substance contained aluminum oxide and silicate powder.

Kistler and Jellison said the substance is non-hazardous, but it can cause eye irritation.

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