Issue Date: November 21, 2011
Tosoh Has Fatal Fire In Japan
An explosion at a Tosoh plant in Nanyo, Japan, killed an employee and idled one of the country’s largest vinyl chloride plants. The explosion occurred on Nov. 13 when employees were repairing process control valves on an oxychlorination unit. Tosoh says it is Japan’s largest producer of the polyvinyl chloride raw material, which it makes via an oxychlorination process it pioneered. The unit involved can produce 550,000 metric tons per year, roughly half of the company’s vinyl chloride capacity at the site. Japan’s total vinyl chloride capacity is 3.5 million metric tons, according to the Japan Petrochemical Industry Association.
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