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OSHA cites Honeywell Electronic Chemicals for process safety management violations

11 December 2012

On December 10 the US Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited Honeywell Electronic Chemicals LLC with 10 serious safety and health violations at the company's facility in Mansfield. Proposed penalties total $53,000.

OSHA's Fort Worth Area Office personnel opened an investigation at the company's facility at US Highway 287 North as a part of the agency's national emphasis program on process safety management, known as PSM, for covered chemical facilities. Employees were found to be exposed to catastrophic releases of highly hazardous chemicals while conducting operations at the plant.

"This company jeopardised the safety of its employees by failing to implement OSHA's process safety management regulations effectively," said Jack Rector, OSHA's area director in Fort Worth, Texas. 

Six serious violations all relate to PSM, and include failing to ensure process equipment complies with recognised and generally accepted good engineering practices; ensure standard operating procedures were annually certified; conduct an incident investigation within 48 hours and ensure piping and instrumentation diagrams were up-to-date.

Four additional serious violations involve failing to ensure emergency exits were properly marked, confined spaces were identified by signage, the location of fire extinguishers were properly labeled and that hazardous containers were properly labeled. 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.

Honeywell Electronic Chemicals, a subsidiary of Chandler, Ariz.-based Honeywell International Inc., employs about 30 workers in Mansfield. The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Fort Worth area director or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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