RAYONG, Thailand (May 8, 2012)—BST Elastomers Co. Ltd. has declared force majeure at its BR and E-SBR facility in Rayong after the May 5 explosion that killed 11 and injured more than 140, according to a report from market information firm ICIS.com.
The company told customers in letter dated May 8 that the facilities suffered severe damage and are expected to be out of action for months, ICIS.com reported. The letter said the explosion and fire initially affected the BR unit and then spread to the E-SBR unit on the same site.
As a result, the BR unit operated by BST Elastomers—a unit of Bangkok Synthetics Co. Ltd.—is unlikely to open before November, while the E-SBR unit might be open within 2 months. A butadiene monomer production unit may be back on stream within a month, said ICIS.
The facility has annual capacity for 50,000 metric tons of BR and 70,000 tons of E-SBR, made under license from JSR Corp. and Zeon Corp.
JSR said in a statement that its joint venture factory to make S-SBR under construction in Thailand with BST Elastomers was not affected by the explosion. The joint venture site—called JSR BST Elastomers Co. Ltd.—is located 2 kilometers north of the explosion, JSR said.