The Texas oil refinery is partially suspending operations, citing a lack of oxygen supply

Part of a unit from an oil refinery in Texas has ceased operations due to a lack of oxygen supply in the area, Bloomberg reported.

Sulfur recovery units use oxygen in an attempt to retrieve sulfur coming from raw materials to meet the emission standards of the chemical element. An environmental application from Texas noted that Citgo Petroleum Corp. had halted some of the unit’s activities due to a greater medical need for oxygen in the area, Bloomberg noted.

The Hill has contacted Citgo for comment.

The announcement comes as hospitals in states such as South Carolina, Florida, Louisiana and Texas are struggling with oxygen deficiency among a larger number of COVID-19 cases, CNN reported.

Some hospitals ran on a reserve of up to just one day’s oxygen, a purchasing group said, according to Bloomberg.

In Texas, the state experienced over 21,000 COVID-19 cases on Wednesday and over 28,000 cases the day before, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). New daily cases were in the hundreds in July.

About 69 percent of Texans ages 12 and older are at least partially vaccinated, while 57 percent are fully vaccinated.

Still, some officials have had to take measures, including closing schools or requiring masks inside classrooms, to mitigate further spread of COVID-19. Due to COVID-19 outbreaks, at least four school districts in Texas have already temporarily closed their classrooms, It reported the Associated Press.

The management service noted that Indian Oil Corp. also had to redirect oxygen to hospitals earlier in the year as doctors experienced a greater number of COVID-19 cases.

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