To the editor:

Thank you very much for your editorial entitled; "Don't reject Hercules expansion." Your arguments in support of our conditional use permit application to Salt Lake County to expand our new Bacchus West facility are logical and compelling.You need to know, however, that actual circumstances are even more logical and more compelling.

You wrote that Hercules' application should be supported by county commissioners "even though the proposed plant would not be surrounded by a similar buffer zone" to that which now exists around our older Bacchus East Facility.

In reality, the same type buffer zone which now surrounds our Bacchus East plant is in place around our new Bacchus West facility - having been plotted since we started construction of that facility more than four years ago.

Our proposed expansion would keep our operation well within those limits.

In fact, worst-on calculations made of what could be involved if we were to have an accident in one of the new buildings we are asking to have approved would keep blast effects well within the overpressure limits established in the Bacchus West buffer zone. We carefully calculated this ourselves.

Our calculations have subsequently been substantiated by the Salt Lake County Planning staff itself and by their independent consultants at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The information of our compliance was clearly stated by the county staff at the outset of the hearing on May 17.

That is why we are so astonished at the decision which the Planning Commission made not to approve our request. We meet all federal building siting requirements, all state requirements, and we meet the requirements for overpressure that were jointly agreed to with Salt Lake County and West Valley City during the annexation process.

All this was done in the express interest of public safety. We believe, consequently, there is no good reason why our permit to expand our operations should not be approved. We also believe positive action on our application by the Salt Lake County Commission should be forthcoming.

Furthermore, we believe that when all the facts surrounding the issue are examined by our three commissioners - without all the unfounded emotion surrounding this matter up to now - these gentlemen will reach the conclusion that Hercules should be allowed to proceed with the expansion.

This is not only for the economic reasons which you so compellingly stated in your editorial, but because Hercules meets all the requirements imposed upon us, including safety standards.

D.E. Thompson

Bacchus Works Manager