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Oregon OSHA has published their PSM NEP which focuses on processes with Ammonia, Chlorine, and Formaldehyde. The NEP also EXEMPTS VPP sites from any inspections under their Emphasis Program. To make the most effective use of its limited resources, OR-OSHA will use annual data gathered by the Oregon Office of State Fire Marshal (OSFM) Hazardous Substance Information System (HSIS) to generate PSM inspection scheduling lists. The most current HSIS database will be sorted to generate a list of all employers who reported having chemicals stored at their facilities in excess of the PSM Threshold Quantities (PSM-TQ). The majority of PSM employers have threshold quantities of ammonia, chlorine, or formaldehyde. Oregon OSHA will divide the list into four groups:
Respondent is a limited liability company which owns a chemical plant where regulated substances and other extremely hazardous substances are produced, processed, stored, and handled, and from which an accidental release occured. Within the facility, the Respondent produces nylon intermediates (adiponitrile (ADN), hexamethylene diamine (HMC), adipic acid, C12, and C12 co-products). On May 9, 2015, the facility started-up the OP-1 cyclohexane oxidation unit. Unknown to the unit operator there had been a failure of the cooling water inlet supply valve for the wash oil stripper condenser. Because of this failure the condenser did not properly cool the steam/cyclohexane mixture. As a result cyclohexane was released to the ambient air. The failed cooling waler valve was discovered five (5) days later. The unit operator, once alerted to the failed valve, shutdown the unit, had the valve repaired, and re-started the unit, which functioned properly. Over the five days 18,102 pounds of cyclohexane was released. The failed cooling water inlet supply gate valve was subsequently analyzed to determine causes of the metallurgic failure. The engagement slot of the valve gate was heavily corroded so as to be non-functional.
Last week OSHA published their "spring agenda" and this gives us a very good idea as to which standards OSHA has on their radar screen. Here is their agenda...
Respondent is a Dairy Company that was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1921. Respondent has owned and operated the fluid milk manufacturing facility since 1973. Respondent uses anhydrous ammonia for refrigeration of raw milk, juice concentrate, and product storage.
VIEWER DISCRETION IS STRONGLY ADVISED! This video is extremely graphic by way of the sounds and viewer discretion is advised. You may want to turn down the volume. The video is a classic example of flammable liquid flash fire and it is the only reason why I am sharing it. Keep your eyes on the white car at the bottom of the screen. Gasoline has a flash point of -50F and its vapor is heavier than air and can travel great distances across the ground to find an ignition source, which can be less than 1 mJ. A running car or even a hot engine/exhaust can be enough to ignite the vapor, as shown by this video.
A factory refrigeration technician who lost his lungs to an anhydrous ammonia leak has no case against his employer, a poultry plant in N.C. The incident in June 2009 killed one refrigeration technician and injured another refrigeration technician and their supervisor. The injured refrigeration technician was in a coma for four to five months and had to have a double-lung transplant. It all started in April 2009 when the U.S. Department of Agriculture inspected the poultry plant and ordered the facility to replace a part in its refrigeration equipment, a votator heat exchanger, which uses anhydrous ammonia to chill the poultry before packaging. The company received the part, an inner sleeve, in June 2009 and decided to use its own employees instead of hiring an outside contractor to install it. The instructions for replacing the inner sleeve include a warning that all of the refrigerant - the anhydrous ammonia - must be removed first.
Respondent is the owner and/or operator of a public water treatment facility that uses chlorine in its water treatment process. The amount of chlorine on hand at the facility is up to 9,000 pounds. At all times relevant to this Consent Agreement and Final Order (CAFO), Respondent produced, processed, handled or stored chlorine at its above listed facility. On or about August 27-28, 2013, EPA conducted an inspection of Respondent's facility to determine compliance with the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act ("EPCRA"), the release reporting provisions of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act ("CERCLA"), and Section 112(r) of the CAA and 40 C.F.R. Part 68. Information collected as a result of this inspection revealed that Respondent had greater than 2,500 pounds of chlorine in a process at the Respondent's facility. Chlorine is a regulated substance pursuant to 40 C.F.R. § 68.3. The threshold quantity for chlorine, as listed in 40 C.F .R. § 68.130, Table 1, is 2,500 pounds. EPA alleges that Respondent has violated the CAA and federal regulations, promulgated pursuant to the CAA, as follows:
OSHA has issued nine serious and two other-than-serious violations to a refrigeration warehouse after a January 2016 complaint investigation found the employer violated OSHA's process safety management standard in regards to the anhydrous ammonia used in the facility's refrigeration process where more than 10,000 pounds of ammonia are in use. An investigation by the agency's area office found the company specifically failed to:
OSHA began an inspection Nov. 12, 2015, at the coffee manufacturing facility after the release of carbon dioxide asphyxiated a 53-year-old shift supervisor. Following its inspection, OSHA issued citations for nine serious violations. The employer did not provide proper training to its workers for stopping the release of a hazardous chemical. Additionally, the company did not have the proper procedures in place for stopping releases. Here is a breakdown of the emergency response citations: