Post Hurricane Harvey - Texas Chemical Industry Priority is Employees and Community
By Hector L. Rivero, President & CEO, Texas Chemical Council and the Association of Chemical Industry of Texas.
In the catastrophic aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, the Texas chemical industry is focused on helping its employees and communities recover.
Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who was displaced or impacted by Hurricane Harvey and the record flooding across the state. Your resiliency and determination are an inspiration, and we hope your recovery is swift and smooth.
I am very proud of our industry’s incredible efforts to safely shut down their facilities across the state in advance of Hurricane Harvey and who prioritized the safety and wellbeing of their employees and communities before, during and after the storm. Harvey’s winds and record rainfall created major challenges for chemical facilities along the Texas Gulf Coast. Sites all along the coast implemented their emergency plans in advance of the storm to safely shut down operations, protect against environmental impacts, and allow their employees to tend to their families and property.
Now two weeks after the storm, sites continue to carefully assess for damage and make necessary repairs to safely resume operations. As the storm slowly wreaked havoc across the state, TCC worked closely with state emergency management officials to coordinate critical needs; and our members responded quickly to dozens of requests for assistance. Member companies helped provide chemicals to restore water treatment supply for Corpus Christi, sent meals ready to eat (MRE’s) and tanker trucks of potable water to Beaumont and Port Arthur, provided a supply of medical grade nitrogen tanks for a hospital in Beaumont, and donated chlorine for sterilization purposes to numerous cities. But the top priority for TCC member companies has been their people. TCC member companies are providing housing and meals for hundreds of employees and their families who were displaced from their homes. Some have purchased trailers and mobile homes, some have set up temporary housing on their property, and others have secured rental properties and hotel rooms to accommodate their most valuable asset: their people.
Finally, we want to thank all the companies who have committed countless volunteer hours and tens of millions of dollars to the recovery effort in communities all along the Texas Gulf Coast. We are proud of all our member companies that have answered the call when our state and communities needed a helping hand.