Accidental coke dust release at Martinez refinery

The Martinez Refining Company is reporting another accidental release of petroleum coke dust. 

Contra Costa Health posted on social media about this latest incident, saying they heard about the release on Saturday at around 1:18 p.m. 

The refinery posted on social media to say the small amount of dust "became airborne for a short period of time." The refinery said employees who responded managed to keep the substance on site.  

The health department sent a hazmat team to look into potential offsite effects from the release. The department determined there were no offsite impacts from the coke dust release. 

Contra Costa County supervisors had previously called the number of incidents at the refinery unprecedented and not normal. 

On one day in 2022, 24 tons of chemicals were released at the refinery. Samples of the dust later showed elevated levels of aluminum and other metals, which could have potentially caused respiratory symptoms in people who breathed it. 

Coke dust is a black and sooty substance created during the petroleum refining process. 

MRC said on social media Saturday, "We apologize for any concern this may have caused the community. As always, we have a community inquiry phone number you can call at (925) 313-3777 or (925) 313-3601 during off work hours." 

Bay City News contributed to this story.