Manufacturing News

Texas blast sparks renewed concerns over Incitec Pivot Port Adelaide site


Mayor Gary Johnson has used the recent explosion at a Texan fertiliser factory to continue the push for Incitec Pivot to move its factory out of Port Adelaide.

SafeWork South Australia found in 2011 that the Incitec site on Francis Street posed the risk of its ammonium nitrate catching fire and exploding.

Yesterday Johnson said that the plant should go elsewhere, which Incitec said it would consider doing if it was provided with taxpayer assistance.

"Let's look towards this industry which is an important industry, see if it can be moved, potentially with government assistance to a safer location, safer for the people of Port Adelaide in particular if there was to be some form of a catastrophe," he told the ABC.

Citing the Texan blast at West Ferilizer Plant, which is feared to have killed up to 15 people according to some reports, he said the SA government should move the Port Adelaide fertiliser factory.

"The blast zone that they implemented, or stated that no residential development should occur within, was something like 900 metres," he noted.

"When you look at news reports of that fertiliser works going up, I believe they stated the effect was felt as far away as 80 kilometres. I think the time is right to fully support the EPA and SafeWork in their judgment.

Work on the first stage of the nearby Newport Quay development has been postponed after the SafeWork report.

"We are aware that the Port is changing and that there are different priorities and circumstances to when the site was established," Incitec Pivot’s corporate affairs manager Matt Trotman told News Limited earlier in April.

"We are in … continuing discussions with the State Government about the best location for our distribution facility that suits all parties including our extensive agricultural customer base."


Image: Fairfax Media

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