Workers cleaning a chemical spill at a manufacturer of plastic thermoformed products had not been trained in proper cleanup procedures or provided proper personal protective equipment, according to an OSHA investigation. OSHA found that workers experienced symptoms of overexposure to an isocyanates chemical used in plastics manufacturing that can cause occupational asthma and other lung problems, as well as irritation of the eyes, nose, throat and skin. Seven serious violations, carrying proposed penalties of $49,000, were cited. OSHA initiated the inspection on Sept. 5, 2014, under the National Emphasis Program for Occupational Exposure to Isocyanates*, after it received a complaint that alleged improper cleanup of a spill of approximately 100 gallons of the chemical diphenylmethane diisocyanate, a type of isocyanate. OSHA cited the company for seven serious violations for lack of a hazardous materials spill response plan and failure to train workers on how to respond to spills. Additionally, required personal protective equipment, such as gloves and respirators, was not provided. Here is a breakdown of the citations:
Respondent is a Water Works Department (HWWD or Respondent), a municipal owned utility organized under the laws of the State of Indiana. Beginning prior to 1999 Respondent used, stored, handled, and moved, multiple one ton containers of the regulated substance chlorine at the Facility in amounts over the chlorine threshold quantity of 2,500 pounds per year. At all times relevant to this CAPO, Respondent's use, storage, handling, and movement of the chlorine containers at the Facility was a "process," as that term is defined at 40 C.F.R. § 68.3. On May 21, 1999, Respondent submitted its initial RMP for the chlorine process at the Facility. On April 19, 2006, Respondent submitted its revised and updated RMP for the chlorine process at the Facility. On May 9, 2011, Respondent submitted to U.S. EPA its second revised and updated RMP for the chlorine storage process at the Facility (the 2011 RMP).
The Respondent has three RMProgram covered processes, one chlorine dioxide process, which stores or otherwise uses chlorine dioxide in an amount exceeding its applicable threshold of 1,000 pounds, and two chlorine processes, which store or otherwise uses chlorine in amounts exceeding its applicable threshold of 2,500 pounds. Based on an RMProgram compliance monitoring investigation initiated by EPA on July 22-24, 2013, the EPA alleges that the Respondent violated the codified rules governing the CAA Chemical Accident Prevention Provisions, because Respondent did not adequately implement provisions of 40 CFR Part 68 when it:
One of the most common debates in the refrigeration industry is "do my condensers need relief protection"? Everyone from OSHA to IIAR have chimmed in with their positions. But recently the SAFTENG team was doing some work in the great state of New Jersey and came across New Jersey's State Code for refrigerations plants, which stated the following regarding the placement of relief devices on the process...
Millions of homes will enjoy a deep fried turkey this Thanksgiving and Christmas. This method of preparing the traditional family meal(s) has gained much popularity, but every year hundreds will suffer injury and/or damage to their homes while deep frying their turkey! Please watch and learn and don't become a statistic this Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday.
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