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MEMBERS AREA UPDATE on 3/26/2016 - 426 photos added
Over 13,300 exclusive unsafe acts/conditions and accident/injuries photos
and over 1,300 ppt's & doc's from more than 2,827 contributors!
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I just hope I can convince other safety professionals that atmospheric storage tanks containing flammable liquids are EXTREMELY DANGEROUS and deserve our respect when it comes to DESIGN, CONSTRUCTION, FACILITY SITING, and MAINTENANCE (e.g. MI), and RELIEF PROTECTION. I recently had a lawyer attempt to make an argument that if these tanks were so dangerous then why did OSHA exempt them from their PSM standard? Yeah lets let politics protect us from this...
NOTE: this was a waste water tank at a fracking site so it was not even a pure flammable liquid! Launch takes place around the 30 second mark of the video.
CLICK HERE to see the dramatic High Res photos of this event.
Complainant alleges that Respondent violated the provisions identified herein and seeks the assessment of a civil penalty. Respondent owns and operates a refinery. At all times relevant to this action, Respondent processed, handled. and stored regulated flammable substances listed in 40 C.F.R. § 68.130 in a mixture at its facility. At all times relevant to this action, Respondent had eight covered processes at its facility, which are referred to as:
OSHA has issued 14 serious violations ($80,000) after an October 2015 complaint investigation found the manufacturer and distributor of chemicals used in a variety of industries including manufacturing, water treatment and oil and gas violated OSHA's PSM standard. Here is a breakdown of the citations:
The much anticipated 2016 ERG (well it was for HAZMAT folks) is now available for download in Portable Document Format (pdf).
The file size is 12700 KB.
See below for changes from the 2012 edition...
Intrinsically SAFE instrumentation MATTERS (digital pressure gauge caused explosion that severed arm)
A postdoctoral researcher was combining 70% hydrogen, 25% oxygen, and 5% carbon dioxide gases from high-pressure cylinders into a lower pressure tank when an explosion occurred that severed her right arm just above the elbow. The gas mixture was “food” for bacteria being used to produce biofuels and bioplastics. She was working for the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute under another researcher. In a 2013 paper by the supervising researcher, it shows a similar set-up in which gases are plumbed through a mixing device directly into the bioreactor (Int. J. Hydrogen Energy 2013, DOI: 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2013.04.153). The gas gauge identified in that paper was an “intrinsically safe” model designed for use with flammable gases. But after the postdoctoral researcher started in the lab last fall, she purchased a 49-L steel gas tank, a DIFFERENT gauge, one that was NOT rated as intrinsically safe, a pressure-relief valve, and fittings, and she put them together. She told fire department investigators, she would add the gases to the portable tank, which would then be connected to the bioreactor. In the week before the incident, a similar set-up with a 3.8-L tank resulted in a “small internal explosion” when she pressed the OFF button on the same type gauge. She also occasionally experienced STATIC SHOCKS when touching the 3.8-L tank, which was NOT grounded. She reported the shocks and possibly the small explosion to the supervising researcher, who told her not to worry about it. On the day of the incident, the 49-L tank exploded when she pressed the OFF button on the gauge.
The University of Hawaii hired the University of California Center for Laboratory Safety to independently investigate the incident. That report is expected to be completed by the end of this month. The Hawaii Occupational Safety & Health Division is also investigating the incident.
CLICK HERE for the FULL Honolulu Fire Department Report which contains scene photos and more valuable data.
When we begin a "human factors" analysis, we should do more than ask "Is the equipment labeled?", as human factors rely on the equipment being PROPERLY LABELED. This is a perfect example of something be labeled, but asking for an accident. Even as obvious of a mistake this is and everyone who looks at this picture will just shake their head, this is a classic example of a "human factors" FAILURE. And yes, I have already been asked by more than one manager... "show me in any OSHA standard where this is a violation and I will fix it".
Many thanks to Bob Cornett for the share!
WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! - This video is EXTREMELY GRAPHIC and shows a worker being lifted into the air and landing seconds later within the video. This was a PRCS FATALITY, so if seeing these types of REAL videos is upsetting, VIEWER DISCRETION is STRONGLY advised. Cause of this FATAL Accident was lack of control over ignition sources INSIDE the underground gasoline tank. This accident occurred outside of the USA and was in a country that does not have PRCS regulations nor hot work regulations; unfortunately the laws of chemistry and physics still applied.
I have written several times now about OSHA’s new Construction Standard for Permit-Required Confined Spaces and how this new standard clarifies several aspects regarding the General Industry Standard 1910.146. But one requirement I continue to get push back on is the fact that ENTRY-STYLE Rescue is REQUIRED for ALL “permitted entires” in both Construction and General Industry. It seems that 1926.1204(i) is the requirement so many want to slice and dice to meet their needs against my better judgement…
Full disclosure, I do PSM/RMP audits, but that does not change the facts that I will present in this article. Over the past couple of years I have seen first hand companies cancel or fail to schedule their 3-year PSM/RMP audits because their State EPA, Federal EPA or OSHA did a PSM/RMP inspection at their facility and they feel this “inspection” counts as a 3-year audit. They could not be further from reality and here’s why: