Anhydrous ammonia is widely used as refrigerant in industrial facilities such as:
- meat, poultry, and fish processing facilities,
- dairy and ice cream plants,
- wineries and breweries,
- fruit juice, vegetable juice, and soft drink processing facilities,
- cold storage warehouses,
- other food processing facilities,
- seafood processing facilities aboard
- petrochemical facilities.
Ammonia refrigeration systems with 10,000 pounds or more of ammonia are a covered process subject to the requirements of the Process Safety Management Standard [29 CFR 1910.119]. Many of these requirements are identified in this e-tool as possible controls and are useful as recommended practices whether or not the ammonia refrigeration system is a covered process. As mentioned in 29 CFR 1910.119 Appendix C, smaller businesses which may have limited resources might consider reductions in inventory or dispersing inventory to several locations to reduce the risk from an ammonia release.
This eTool is designed to assist employers and employees in identifying and controlling the hazards associated with the operation and maintenance of ammonia refrigeration systems. This eTool consists of Ammonia Receiving and Storage and Emergency Response modules. Other operations include condenser area, piping and pressure vessels, refrigeration spaces, and the machine room.
Workers have the right to:
- Working conditions that do not pose a risk of serious harm.
- Receive information and training (in a language and vocabulary the worker understands) about workplace hazards, methods to prevent them, and the OSHA standards that apply to their workplace.
- Review records of work-related injuries and illnesses.
- File a complaint asking OSHA to inspect their workplace if they believe there is a serious hazard or that their employer is not following OSHA's rules. OSHA will keep all identities confidential.
- Exercise their rights under the law without retaliation, including reporting an injury or raising health and safety concerns with their employer or OSHA. If a worker has been retaliated against for using their rights, they must file a complaint with OSHA as soon as possible, but no later than 30 days.
For additional information, see OSHA's Workers page.
How to Contact OSHA
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit www.osha.gov or call OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), TTY 1-877-889-5627.
eTools are "stand-alone", illustrated, Web-based training tools on occupational safety and health topics. As indicated in the disclaimer, eTools do not create new OSHA requirements.