On November 25, the residents in the City of Martinez were greeted with white ash-like substance found on buildings and cars in the downtown area. Samples have been taken.
Here is what was posted to social media:
Martinez Refining Company Offering Free Car Washes To Those With “White Ash” On Their Vehicles
Thank you, neighbors, for contacting us and your patience while we investigated the white, ash-like material found on buildings and cars, primarily in the Downtown Martinez Area, on November 25, 2022.
In response, Martinez Refining Company representatives took samples of the material to a lab for testing. Although we are still waiting to get the results back from the lab, based on input from the community and refinery personnel, we believe the substance is likely catalyst dust used in the refining process. We aim to be a good, respectful neighbor, and we apologize for any inconvenience this release may have caused.
Catalyst dust is primarily alumina silicate, clay, and other minerals mined from the earth This is also known as “spent,” or used catalyst, which has been incinerated at high temperatures to remove impurities so the catalyst can be reused.
Alumina silicate and the other naturally occurring materials are considered non-toxic and non-hazardous, including in this form. This material appears as minute white particles that is easily removed by rinsing with water from surfaces such as, patio furniture, toys, and fruits and vegetables. There are no health risks associated with this material.
For people who may have difficulty removing the dust from their vehicles, Martinez Refining Company has made arrangements with Autotopia Car Wash in Martinez, to provide car washes to Martinez residents in the affected area through December 2, 2022.
- Autotopia: 3950 Alhambra Avenue, Martinez
- Sunday 11/27, 9am-4:00pm
- Monday-Friday 11/28-12/2, 9am – 4:30pm
Please provide your driver’s license as proof of Martinez residency.
If you experience issues removing the substance with water on other surfaces, or if you have any additional questions, please contact [email protected].
Again, thank you to those of you who shared information with us, and to everyone for your patience.