US Labor Department's OSHA cites Shreveport, La., refinery
with $173,000 in penalties for alleged safety and health violations
SHREVEPORT, La. - The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued citations to Calumet Shreveport Lubricants & Waxes LLC for 22 alleged serious violations and two alleged repeat violations of federal health and safety regulations. Penalties total $173,000.
"This is not the first time this company has jeopardized the safety of its employees," said Dorinda Folse, OSHA's area director in Baton Rouge, La. "OSHA's safety and health standards must be followed to prevent injuries and fatalities."
OSHA's Baton Rouge Area Office began its inspection Feb. 23 at the company's facility in Shreveport as part of the agency's Petroleum Refinery Process Safety Management National Emphasis Program. The PSM program is intended to prevent or minimize the consequences of a catastrophic release of toxic, reactive, flammable or explosive highly hazardous chemicals from a process. A process is any activity or combination of activities including any use, storage, manufacturing, handling or the onsite movement of highly hazardous chemicals.
Serious violations found include failing to provide accurate process safety information for piping and instrumentation diagrams, conduct incident investigations, provide written operating procedures, resolve recommended actions resulting from compliance audits, and adequately address the citing of control rooms and employees working in process units. A serious violation is one in which there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
Two repeat violations have been cited for failing to update process safety information when changes occur and to act on findings of potential overpressures for occupied structures stemming from process hazard analyses for the period from 1998 to 2009. OSHA defines a repeat violation as one where the employer previously has been cited for the same or similar hazard within the past three years.
In September 2007, OSHA cited Calumet Shreveport Lubricant & Waxes for willful, serious and repeat violations totaling $122,400. Calumet, an operating subsidiary of Calumet Specialty Products Partners LP, employs about 600 workers total, and operates two additional refineries in northwest Louisiana as well as facilities in Texas, Pennsylvania and Illinois.
The company has 15 working days from receipt of citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Baton Rouge, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Employers and employees with questions regarding workplace safety and health standards can call the Baton Rouge Area Office at 225-298-5458 or OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742 to report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers.
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 assure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
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