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Hovensa Installs New Alarm System

Aug. 2, 2005 – Alex Moorhead, Hovensa vice president, said Monday the company has installed a new emergency alarm system at the refinery. Moorhead said the new system uses amplified pre-recorded voice-messages to communicate the type and location of an emergency. The old system used a distinctive set of coded tones to communicate emergency information. He said the new feature would be helpful to persons who are not familiar with the coded tones for the various areas of the refinery.
Moorhead commented that persons outside of the refinery sometimes become anxious when the alarm is sounded and asked what are they supposed to do. He explained that the alarm system is intended to serve three primary purposes:
— It summons members of the Hovensa emergency response team, including the fire brigade, to the site of the emergency, or to their emergency response station elsewhere in the refinery.
— It alerts everyone within the refinery to take the appropriate action that was prescribed in their initial and annual safety training in the refinery. For example, motorists on the roads in the refinery are expected to stop their vehicle in a safe spot on the side of the road in order to clear the road for emergency vehicles.
— It also alerts persons in the vicinity of the emergency to take predetermined actions to protect themselves, co-workers, and anyone else in the area. For example, shutting down all work which in which a potential source of ignition is being used and all non-operations personnel reporting to the nearest designated safe assembly point until the emergency is over.
Moorhead said in a press release that members of the public usually are not expected to take any action in response to an emergency at the refinery. "If it is necessary for persons outside of the refinery to take any precaution in response to an emergency in the refinery, they will be notified by the V.I. Police or Fire Department or by V.I. Territorial Emergency Management Agency based on information received from Hovensa," Moorhead said.

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