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Summer’s here and temperatures are rising in the Southwest. Extreme heat kills dozens of workers every year, and sickens thousands more. Tips and tools from OSHA can help keep workers – and others – safe. Among the most at-risk industries are construction, transportation, agriculture and landscaping. New and temporary workers are especially susceptible to heat-illness and death due to lack of acclimatization.
Anyone who has done any audits knows this question carries a lot of weight, since cylinders "in use" have different safety requirements versus cylinders that are "in storage". The great safety folks at OR-OSHA have once again provided a really nice flow chart we can use to establish the state the cylinder is in so that the proper safety rules can be applied to it. And yes, these rules are ONLY enforceable in the state of Oregon, but wow what a nice tool we can use in any workplace - even though OR-OSHA is years ahead of Federal OSHA in their compressed gas safety standards! I would also like to mention that OR-OSHA has also re-defined how cylinders of flammables and oxidizers can be "separated" by means other than 20' separation. Noncombustible barriers modified or constructed after May 1, 2015, must meet the following additional minimum requirements:
On Jan. 20, a pressure-relief device released flammable gas and liquid into the atmosphere; it burned for more than two hours. OSHA investigated the facility and cited the employer for one willful and six serious safety violations. The violations included failing to train operators, update operating procedures, conduct a management of change analysis when changing software and hardware, conduct periodic inspections and document inspections on emergency shutdown devices.
Respondent owns and operates a Power Plant ("Facility") which produces processes, handles, or stores, among other things, hydrogen peroxide, which is an extremely hazardous substance when stored in a carbon steel tank and produces hydrogen, a regulated substance, when reacting with carbon steel. On July 25, 2014, there was an incident in which a tank had an uncontrolled release of pressure from the Hydrogen Peroxide tank. The 7000 pound carbon steel tank liberated from its foundation, separated from its bottom at the weld seam, and jettisoned 570 feet to the South West of the Facility. The 1200 gallons of hydrogen peroxide were released to the environment and leaving the water treatment system inoperable. This resulted in a plant forced outage of 48 hours and mitigation costs of approximately $100,000. There were NO injuries or fatalities. Respondent’s investigation revealed that…
OSHA issues proposed rulemaking clarifying the ongoing obligation to make and maintain accurate records of work-related injuries and illnesses
OSHA today issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that clarifies an employer’s continuing obligation to make and maintain an accurate record of each recordable injury and illness throughout the five-year period during which the employer is required to keep the records. OSHA is issuing this proposed rule in light of the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in AKM LLC v. Secretary of Labor (Volks) to clarify its long-standing position that the duty to record an injury or illness continues for as long as the employer must keep records of the recordable injury or illness. The proposed amendments add NO NEW compliance obligations; the proposal would NOT require employers to make records of any injuries or illnesses for which records are not already required. The proposed rule will be published in the July 29, 2015, issue of the Federal Register. Members of the public can submit written comments on the proposed rule at http://www.regulations.gov, the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. See the Federal Register notice* for submission details. Comments must be submitted by Sept. 27, 2015.
On July 22, OSHA issued eight serious safety citations from an inspection that was NOT initiated as a PSM inspection, but after determining that the company was using flammable liquids above the threshold quantities that could present a potential for a catastrophic event. Business was cited for not implementing five elements of the PSM standard, including process hazard analysis, operating procedures and training; and not preventing the sudden startup or movement of equipment during service and maintenance, a procedure known as lockout/tagout. Proposed Penalties are $50,400. Here is a breakdown of the citations: