Chemical Co. Faces Process Safety Citations

Monday, July 11, 2011 @ 02:07 PM gHale

Troy Chemical Corp. is facing citations for 11 safety violations related to process safety management at its Newark facility.

Responding to a New Jersey State Police complaint saying a hazardous chemical solvent released during a cleaning process, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) started its investigation in January. Proposed penalties amount to $62,100.

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“It is vital that the company take the necessary steps to correct these hazards to prevent future chemical releases or other incidents,” said Kris Hoffman, director of OSHA’s Parsippany Area Office. “All aspects of the OSHA process safety management standard must be followed by employers in order to ensure that employees stay safe at work.”

The violations include failing to provide a written plan for employee participation, written shift change procedures, adequate process chemistry documentation, pressure relief system design and design basis, electrical classification documentation, and written mechanical integrity procedures.

Additionally, the company’s operating procedures lacked documentation of chemical properties and hazards, documentation of control measures to occur after physical and inhalation exposure to hazardous chemicals, and emergency shutdown procedures. The company also failed to ensure equipment complied with recognized and generally accepted good engineering practices, conduct compliance audits, conduct initial process hazard analysis, inspect and test equipment, and manage changes to the operating procedures before they were made. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

Troy Chemical develops and manufactures performance additive chemicals, and employs 96 workers at its Newark site.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, ask for an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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