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Hovensa Mechanical Failure Slows Production


March 15, 2006 — A mechanical failure at the Hovensa oil refinery has slowed gasoline production, an official said Wednesday.
Crews were repairing the catalytic cracker unit at the Western Hemisphere's second largest oil refinery after it failed Saturday, said Hovensa Vice President Alex Moorhead.
Moorhead declined to say how much less gasoline, diesel and jet fuel the refinery would produce while under repair, saying it could take up to two weeks to get the refinery back to its 500,000 barrels a day capacity.
"Repairs are in process and expected to take 10 to 14 days," he said.
No environmental damage resulted from the mechanical failure, which Moorhead declined to describe in detail.
The repairs do not effect crude oil refining at the facility, he said.
"We're refining the normal amount of crude oil," Moorhead said.
Hovensa is co-owned by New York-based Amerada Hess Corporation and Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of Venezuela.
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