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State: Judge erred in dismissing Tesoro refinery fines after deadly explosion

State regulators say a judge erred when he overturned nearly $2.4 million in penalties against Tesoro following the 2010 deadly explosion at its Anacortes refinery.
State regulators say a judge erred when he overturned nearly $2.4 million in penalties against Tesoro following the 2010 deadly explosion at its Anacortes refinery. Courtesy to The Bellingham Herald

State regulators say a judge erred when he overturned nearly $2.4 million in penalties against Tesoro following the 2010 deadly explosion at its Anacortes refinery.

The Washington Department of Labor and Industries on Thursday petitioned the state Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals to review the case and affirm the penalties.

In June, the judge hearing the case for the board, Mark Jaffe, vacated 45 violations against Texas-based Tesoro. He said the department failed to show that Tesoro committed any of the alleged violations.

The state’s petition contends that the judge didn’t allow the department to present its case to the board. It says evidence supports the department’s citations against the company.

Five men and two women died in the April 2, 2010, blast about 70 miles north of Seattle.

Tesoro, now known as Andeavor, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday.

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