Standard Cited: 5A0001 OSH Act General Duty Paragraph

Violation Items
Nr: 106924038 Citation: 01001 Issuance: 07/28/1992 ReportingID: 0213900
Viol Type:Serious NrInstances:1 Contest Date:
Abatement Date:09/11/1992 X Nr Exposed:4 Final Order:
Initial Penalty:4500.00 REC: Emphasis:
Current Penalty:4500.00 Gravity:10 Haz Category:ELECTRIC



Text For Citation: 01 Item/Group: 001 Hazard: ELECTRIC

Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970: The employer did not furnish employment and a place of employment which were free from recognized hazards that were causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees in that employees were exposed to an explosion/fire hazard as follows: a) Building #5, Band Furnace #2 annealing operations: 1) In the "Dense Phase System", mechanical/ electrical equipment deficiencies allowed the conveyor in the furnace to run without material. 2) High temperature process deviation and high oxygen audible safety alarms did not sound due to improper wiring of signal system. 3) Inner curtains at gas box in cooling muffle were improperly sized to insure a proper, reliable seal. 4) The standard operating procedures and operator training for the safe operation of all phases of annealing furnaces under hydrogen atmospheres were not established. 5) Hydrogen piping in building 5 was not identified by legend on pipes with an arrow showing direction of flow as required by Ansi A13-1-1981. 6) Continuous monitoring of hydrogen was not performed near atmosphere furnaces nor were furnaces placarded to provide personnel with constant reminder of the potential hazards of gaseous hydrogen as recommended by gas supplier Linde-Union Carbide in publication L-14-082. Among other methods, one feasible and acceptable method to correct the hazard is to: 1) Ensure a constant supply of powder material to con- veyor belt of furnace while it is operating and/or a warning system that will alert operator to problems with "Dense Phase System", such as a low level #2 tank indicator and mirrors that allow operator to observe materials going onto belt and coming out of the furnace. Also a system of visual checks by furnace operators that ensures material on the belt. 2) The company must ensure that high temperatures, de- viation from process temperatures and high oxygen in in cooling muffle alarms are operational when furnaces are under hydrogen atmospheres. Also all affected personnel must be made cognizant of the purpose, settings and scope and limitation of alarm systems. The visual alarms must be of a type that will alert the furnace operator of a problem or hazard such as a rotating beacon. 3) The sizing and installation and frequency of change of curtains must be closely controlled to ensure as safe as possible, reliable curtain seals. 4) Standard operating procedures and furnace operator training must be established that encompass all phases of of operations of annealing furnaces including emergency trouble shooting and safety procedures which ensures that all operators have an up-to-date procedure to follow for each specific furnace. 5) Label Hydrogen pipe in #5 Building and direction of gas flow as per ANSI A13-1-1981. 6) Install combustible gas continuous monitoring in the furnace area that will detect a buildup of hydrogen. Also warning signs should be placed at hydrogen controls on furnaces to alert operators of hazards of hydrogen gas. As per recommendations of gas supplier Linds-Union Carbide publication L-14-082.