Mobil "not even trying" on emergency incident

Greens MLC Colleen Hartland has described Mobil's response to last night's incident at the Altona refinery as "not even trying".

"I started getting calls from community members soon after 9pm last night.  They could see the flaring for miles around, and they could see the cloud of gas or smoke.  But they couldn't find out what was going on."

"The Altona Refinery Hotline was a recorded message, without any information on the incident."

"The Hobsons Bay emergency after hours info line had a real person operator, but they had no information."

"Only one of the two Altona Refinery Community Liaison Committee contact numbers was answering his phone, and he hadn’t been told what was going on."

"The police emergency information line had a recorded message that 'this line is not currently active'. Meanwhile residents could see a police helicopter overhead."

"There really is no excuse for Mobil not to have told the Community Liaison Committee members and the Hobsons Bay after hours contact what was going on."

"Meanwhile, the next morning, we still don’t have any attempt at an explanation for the huge plume of smoke, steam or gas seen coming out of the site last night. Nobody at Mobil appears willing to admit that there was such a plume, let alone what was in it. But the plume is as clear as day in the photos*."

"If Mobil wants to have an oil refinery close a residential area and important wetlands, they have to realise that they have responsibilities, like fast community information when there's an incident.  If last night is anything to go by, they're not even trying," said Ms Hartland.

For comment: Colleen Hartland - 9689 6373
* Photos of incident available on request

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