Georgia plant fined after explosion

MFG Chemical Inc. faces $77,000 in fines after OSHA discovered 20 safety violations that resulted in 40 employees being hospitalized for decontamination at the Dalton, Ga. plant.

12/11/2012


ISS SourceAfter a runaway reaction from an overheated reactor caused an explosion, MFG Chemical Inc. in Dalton, Ga., is facing $77,000 in fines for 20 safety violations which resulted in the hospitalization for decontamination of 40 employees of other companies working in the surrounding area, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The May explosion was the result of a runaway reaction from an overheated reactor. MFG Chemical makes a range of specialty chemicals for the water treatment, agriculture, pulp and paper industries.

During the production of coagulant 129, a compound used in water treatment, an increase in temperature caused the reactor to overpressurize, rupturing the dome cover and blowing a hole in the roof of the facility.

In response to the incident, OSHA conducted an inspection under the agency’s national emphasis program on process safety management for covered chemical facilities.

Nineteen serious violations involve exposing workers to fire and explosion hazards while they performed manufacturing duties, as well as failing to ensure that initial process hazard analyses were conducted; develop operational procedures that are safe, accurate and concise, and which include operating parameters such as emergency shutdown; provide training and implement safe work practices for contracted workers performing maintenance in a PSM-covered area; develop and implement a written mechanical integrity program for workers required to perform maintenance on and repair process equipment; develop emergency response procedures that include handling small chemical releases; identify permit-required confined spaces such as reactors, receivers and mixers, among others; ensure confined space permits were issued and documented prior to allowing workers to enter the spaces; ensure that eyewash/shower facilities were available and accessible for workers exposed to chemical burns; mount and identify the placement of portable fire extinguishers; and establish a preferred way of communicating an emergency evacuation.

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. The citations carry $76,300 in penalties.

One other-than-serious violation is failing to ensure a material safety data worksheet contained the required information. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm. The citation carries a $700 penalty.

“This inspection has identified a wide range of safety hazards that need to be addressed in order to protect workers,” said Andre Richards, director of OSHA’s Atlanta-West Area Office. “It is the employer’s responsibility to provide a safe and healthful workplace.”



The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
Doubling down on digital manufacturing; Data driving predictive maintenance; Electric motors and generators; Rewarding operational improvement
2017 Lubrication Guide; Software tools; Microgrids and energy strategies; Use robots effectively
Prescriptive maintenance; Hannover Messe 2017 recap; Reduce welding errors
The cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Research team developing Tesla coil designs; Implementing wireless process sensing
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; Paralleling switchgear generator systems
Natural gas engines; New applications for fuel cells; Large engines become more efficient; Extending boiler life

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
Featured articles highlight technologies that enable the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies to get data more easily to the user.
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me