Archives :: Environmental, Health & Safety :: Plant & Personnel Safety

Displaying 181 - 200 of 281 stories.
August 30, 2010
A three-member assessment team led by Johnnie Banks from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB, Washington, D.C.; is deploying to the scene of last week's anhydrous ammonia release at the Millard Refrigerated Services, a warehouse and distribution center in Theodore, Ala., 15 miles south of Mobile. According to media reports, more than 130 members of the public sought medical attention and four...
August 4, 2010
The U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB, Washington, D.C.; has announced that it will be conducting a full investigation into the July 22, 2010, explosion and fire that killed two workers at the Horsehead Holding Co. zinc-recycling facility located in Monaca, Penn. On July 25, the CSB deployed a three-person assessment team to the accident site. Investigators interviewed company...
August 1, 2010
June, Safety, ethics on the horizon, p. 5: As a thoroughly schooled, experienced engineer, I have read the news, watched television and listened to the radio for an engineering explanation of what went on as BP lost control of its oil well. All I have heard is name calling, political comments and threats of punishment. Often I have heard that the scientists failed. Actually it was management that failed...
August 1, 2010
In any given chemical processing facility, there may be literally hundreds of operational environments that require protection from excessive pressure. Both rupture disks and pressure relief valves, or the two used in combination, help protect against damage to equipment and injury to personnel. While the basic technology for either type of mechanism has not changed much in recent years, tweaking the...!_5886.html
July 12, 2010
In a recent statement,  Dr. Rafael Moure-Eraso, chairperson and CEO of the  U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB, Washington, D.C.; expressed that he was saddened by news of the death of a Colorado welder on July 8, while performing what is called “hot work” on a storage tank containing flammables at an environmental remediation company in Englewood, Colo. Hot work is defined...
July 1, 2010
Relief systems are the last line of defense for chemical process facilities. Verifying their capability to safeguard equipment integrity becomes important as process plants age, increase their capacities to adjust to new market requirements, undergo revamps or face new environmental regulations. In the past, approximately 30% of the chemical process industries’ (CPI) losses could be attributed, at...
June 1, 2010
Any chemical engineer can attest to the fact that safety is an ongoing pursuit in our profession, where we occasionally find our teams taking two steps forward and then one step back. Foreseeing and avoiding every type of equipment malfunction is practically impossible, and even the most diligent, conscientious and experienced professionals are bound to make mistakes. However, when the insightful warnings...
June 1, 2010
Tracing its origins to 1915, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (the code) [1] has become the established safety standard governing the design, fabrication and inspection of boilers and pressure vessels, as well as nuclear power plant components during construction. Section VIII, Division I of the code addresses pressure vessels operating at either internal...
May 1, 2010
Wireless communications have great potential in the chemical process industries (CPI) because they do away with complex and costly cable installations and enable completely new applications. And while a recent wave of successful demonstrations has begun to emerge in the CPI (for more, see CE, Nov. 2009, p. 17–23), a number of hurdles stand in the way of a completely wireless Utopia. In most cases...
April 1, 2010
The use of appropriate hazardous-area lighting in the chemical process industries (CPI) is a key factor when it comes to improving overall plant safety and worker productivity, and supporting the best maintenance practices. The potentially hazardous conditions associated with many industrial settings place high demands on the lighting fixtures, and it is essential that pathways, walkways and stairways in...
March 16, 2010
The Chemical Business Association (CBA; Crewe, U.K.; and the U.K. Warehouse Association (UKWA; London; have today, 16th March 2010, launched guidance for their respective member companies designed to assist in achieving higher levels of major hazard management.  Major incidents, such as those at Buncefield and Texas City, underline the importance of high...
January 19, 2010
ABB (Wickliffe, Ohio; says its Safety Execution Center in Buenos Aires, Argentina has been certified by TÜV as having in place and applying a Functional Safety Management System (FSMS) for delivery and implementation of safety system projects in...
December 9, 2009
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is seeking input on the approach to use in developing its federal standard for combustible dust. In its Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) on Combustible Dust, OSHA identified five National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) combustible dust standards that address the hazards of combustible dust processes. Of the five NFPA...
December 5, 2009
Oseco The Flo-Tel rupture disc detection system (photo) is a noninvasive sensor that operates with a reed-switch and magnet technology. The design avoids several challenges of standard rupture disc sensors. Some...
October 1, 2009
Household items, such as breakfast cereal, flour, corn starch and sugar are so common that many were left surprised after the 2008 combustible-dust explosion at a sugar refinery in Georgia. Heard in much of the early media coverage was the question “How could sugar explode?” Plant explosions are, thankfully, not routine occurrences. However, when they do occur, it is the unusual event —...
October 1, 2009
Last month, the chemical engineering profession began to feel its first aftershocks from an explosion that occurred nearly two years ago at a plant that most of you would be hard-pressed to recall. The delivery came in an accident report issued by the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB; The report determined that the massive December 2007 explosion and fire at T2 Laboratories in Jacksonville...
October 1, 2009
Compressed gas cylinders are widely used in research, pilot plant, laboratory and small-scale manufacturing and processing operations as a way to provide a convenient, economical and safe source of high-pressure gases for various applications. These gases can be inert, flammable, toxic or oxidizing (or mixtures of any or all), and are typically supplied at pressures from 800 to 6,000 psig, with 2,250 psig...
September 24, 2009
In a final draft report released today, U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB; investigators said the February 7, 2008, explosion at the Imperial Sugar refinery in Port Wentworth, Ga., resulted from ongoing releases of sugar from inadequately designed and maintained dust-collection equipment, conveyors, and sugar-handling equipment. Inadequate housekeeping practices allowed highly combustible...
September 15, 2009
The massive December 2007 explosion and fire at T2 Laboratories in Jacksonville, Fla. was caused by a runaway chemical reaction that likely resulted from an inadequate reactor cooling system, investigators from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB; said in a final draft report released today. Concluding that T2 did not recognize all of the potential hazards of the process for making a gasoline...
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