PSM Violations for Chemical Maker

Monday, September 7, 2015 @ 12:09 PM gHale

Chemical manufacturer, Odessa, TX-based Baze Chemical Inc., is facing $114,800 in fines for 20 serious violations for violating the process safety management standard, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

For Baze, most of the violations relate to the Process Safety Management standard, which involves the management of hazards associated with processes using dangerous chemicals.

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One of the serious violations was about the information concerning the technology of the process did not include the safe upper and lower limits for temperatures, pressures, flows or compositions. The employer did not ensure that process safety information included the safe upper and lower limits for temperatures and pressures, exposing employees to inhalation, fire and explosion hazards in the event of an ethylene oxide release, OSHA said.

This includes failing to conduct a process hazard analysis prior to processing a batch of chemicals including ethylene oxide, a high hazard product. The employer also did not develop written procedures for the startup, operations or emergencies for chemical processing.

“Process safety management prevents the unexpected release of toxic, reactive or flammable liquids and gases in processes involving highly hazardous chemicals,” said Stephen Boyd, OSHA’s area director in Dallas. “It’s vital that Baze ensure safeguards are in place to protect the safety of workers at this facility.”