PSM Failure for KS Chemical Maker: OSHA

Tuesday, April 26, 2016 @ 05:04 PM gHale

Kansas City, Kansas-based Harcros Chemicals Inc., is facing $80,000 in fines for 14 serious safety violations for violating process safety management (PSM) procedures, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Harcros operates 28 branch locations in 19 states. The employee-owned company is a manufacturer and distributor of chemicals used in a variety of industries including manufacturing, water treatment and oil and gas.

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OSHA issued 14 serious violations to Harcros Chemicals after an October complaint investigation found the manufacturer violated OSHA’s process safety management procedures which contains requirements for the management of hazards associated with processes using highly hazardous chemicals.

An investigation by OSHA’s Wichita Area Office found the company failed to:
• Maintain adequate drawings and diagrams of pipes and instruments used in the chemical process
• Develop procedures for safely conducting tasks involved with each step in the process, or to maintain the ongoing integrity of equipment
• Implement an emergency response plan for the plant and train workers in emergency response procedures

“When highly hazardous chemicals are not properly controlled there is a potential for unintentional release which could result in serious health and safety implications for workers and the neighboring community,” said Judy Freeman, OSHA’s acting area director in Wichita. “Companies like Harcros that manufacture chemicals must thoroughly train workers and monitor procedures used in the process for needed changes.”

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