Smell lingers after Marathon refinery explosion in Detroit - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Smell lingers after Marathon refinery explosion in Detroit

Posted: Updated:
MELVINDALE, Mich. (WJBK) -

An investigation is underway into Saturday's explosion and fire at the Marathon refinery in Detroit. On Sunday, crews were re-testing air quality and residents reported a strong "rotten egg" smell following the incident.

Click on the video player to watch Ron Savage's report.

The explosion rocked the area around southwest Detroit and downriver just after 6pm Saturday. A storage tanker fixed to the ground blew its top. Detroit fire responded to assist Marathon's own on-scene fire brigade. A Detroit fire department source says they were told to prepare to find hydrogen sulfide, benzene and diesel fuel burning at the scene. But, Marathon spokesman Shane Pochard tells Fox 2 the actual product was sour water used in the treatment of converting crude oil. The sour water tanks contain some levels and traces of petrochemicals.

Marathon says the rain that hit the sour water tank Sunday sent the rotten egg smell all over the surrounding area. Fox 2 saw air quality testing meters being used in various areas including neighborhoods in Melvindale. Marathon says they will continue to monitor air quality and they've launched an investigation to determine the cause of the blast.

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