Has OSHA listened to the US Chemical Safety Board?

Published:  18 July, 2013

A public meeting in Washington will consider whether the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has adequately implemented seven key regulatory recommendations issued by the CSB.

In addition the CSB will consider the selection of the agency’s first “Most Wanted Chemical Safety Improvement” issue.

The meeting will be held July 25, 2013, at the Horizon Room at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, located at 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC, 20004.

The morning session will commence at 9:30 am; the afternoon session will begin at 1:30 pm.

The morning session will include consideration by CSB board members to designate the following recommendations to OSHA with the status of “Open- Unacceptable Response,” signifying that the Board does not consider that OSHA has adequately implemented these recommendations:

Recommendation No. 2001-05-I-DE-R1, issued to pursuant to the CSB’s investigation of the July 2001 atmospheric  tank explosion at the Motiva refinery in Delaware City. The recommendation calls upon OSHA to ensure coverage under the Process Safety Management (PSM) standard, CFR 1910.119, for atmospheric storage tanks that could be involved in a potential catastrophic release as a result of being interconnected to a covered process with 10,000 pounds of a flammable substance.

Recommendation No. 2005-4-I-TX-R9, issued pursuant to the CSB’s investigation of the March 2005 explosions and fire at the BP Texas City refinery. The recommendation calls upon OSHA to amend PSM to require management of change (MOC) reviews to be conducted for organizational changes (e.g., mergers and acquisitions) that may impact process safety.

Recommendation No. 2005-4-I-TX-UR1, issued pursuant to the CSB’s investigations of the June 2009 explosion and roof collapse at the ConAgra SlimJim facility in Garner, NC  and the February 2010 explosion at the Kleen Energy power plant in Middletown. The recommendation calls upon OSHA to issue a fuel gas safety standard for construction and general industry.

During the afternoon session, the Board will consider designating four recommendations to OSHA calling for the issuance of a comprehensive general industry standard for combustible dust with the status “Open- Unacceptable Response.”  These recommendations arose from the CSB’s Combustible Dust Study as well as its investigations of the 2008 explosions and fire at the Imperial Sugar Refinery in Port Wentworth, GA, and three dust-related incidents at the Hoeganaes Corporation in Gallatin, TN.

The Board will also consider designating a combustible dust standard as the agency’s first “Most Wanted Safety Improvement” and therefore the subject of more intense agency advocacy efforts, based on its guidance in the recently adopted Board Order 46. This would be the first time that the agency makes such a selection.

The hearing is free and open to the public.  During both the morning and afternoon sessions, members of the audience will have an opportunity to provide comments on the pending actions to be voted by the Board.  More information about the meeting may be found at www.csb.gov.

  • Operation Florian

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