July 29, 2015
Releasing highly hazardous chemicals lands Gregory, Texas, energy facility in
hot water with OSHA
Southcross Energy Partners GP LLC fined $112K for 7 safety violations
Employer name: Southcross Energy Partners GP LLC
Site: Gregory, Texas, with headquarters in Dallas
Date cited: The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the midstream cryogenic natural gas processing facility.
Investigation findings: On Jan. 20, a pressure-relief device operated by Southcross released flammable gas and liquid into the atmosphere; it burned for more than two hours. OSHA investigated the facility and cited the employer for one willful and six serious safety violations. The violations included failing to train operators, update operating procedures, conduct a management of change analysis when changing software and hardware, conduct periodic inspections and document inspections on emergency shutdown devices.
Proposed penalties: $112,000
Citations can be seen at: http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/SouthcrossEnergyPrtnrs_1020247.pdf
Quote: "Preparation is critical for safe workplaces," said Michael J. Rivera, OSHA's area director in Corpus Christi. "Managing worker safety by finding and fixing hazards is the employer's responsibility, but Southcross Energy failed to provide an adequate plan. This situation could have been deadly. Thankfully no one was injured."
Information: Southcross Energy Partners GP reports 320 employees with 12 at the Gregory facility. The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Corpus Christi Area Office at 361-888-3420.
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Release Number: 15-1412-DAL
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