Mt. Gilead Landmark - Executive Summary

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Marion Landmark is a farmer-owned cooperative located in North Central Ohio.  Our Mt. Gilead branch, in addition to handling grain, is also involved with providing crop services and supplies to local farmers.  Part of this supply business includes the selling of anhydrous ammonia.  Farmers use this anhydrous ammonia as a source of nitrogen for their corn.  In terms of processes, ours is a very simple one.  We purchase anhydrous ammonia in bulk and then it is transferred to smaller tanks which are then taken to the fields for application.  As far as storage, we have one 18,000 gallon tank.  Taking into account the 80% maximum fill level, we actually have storage capacity for a maximum of 14,400 gallons of anhydrous ammonia. 
When our anhydrous ammonia storage area was first set-up, it was inspected and certified by the State of Ohio Department of Agriculture.  We have one storage tank, and that tank is locked out at all times.  What this means is that the valves are padlocked for safet 
y and security.  In addition to locking out the tanks, there are other safety features such as excess flow valves, and pressure release valves to insure that the highest level of safety and security are maintained.  These safety features are indicative of the commitment to safety that is shared by all employees of Marion Landmark, from the top down.  This commitment to safety is evident by the mandatory attendance to regular safety meetings, the training updates and reviews, and an overall genuine concern for our employees well being.   
As a farm cooperative located in a small rural town, we have very close ties to our community.  If we were to have a worst-case situation on our hands, it would look something like this.  We have a maximum capacity of 14,400 gallons of anhydrous ammonia storage.  In the event of a ruptured tank, with the full quantity of anhydrous being released over a ten minute period, we would have an endpoint of 3.2 miles from the tank.  This was determined using t 
he RMP Comp software.    It is to our advantage that the local town is small in terms of population, however, the distance to our endpoint has many public receptors.  The town of Mt. Gilead basically surrounds our plant in most directions and has receptors that would be expected in any town.  Schools, hospitals, and homes would all be within our endpoint.  This would put a population of around 8500 people at risk.   While any risk to the public is serious, fortunately, this worst-case scenario is not only very unlikely but  is almost unrealistic. 
A more realistic yet still highly unlikely situation would be if we were to have a fitting break off of the tank or the excess flow valves were to fail.  In this scenario, the anhydrous ammonia could still completely be released, but at a more realistic rate.  Should the excess flow valve fail, the anhydrous ammonia could escape at a rate of 600 gallons per minute.  This information was provided by a tank and valve manufacturer.  Should this  
leak occur, it would take 24 minutes for 14,400 gallons of anhydrous ammonia to escape.  Again, using the RMP Comp software, a leak of this manner would give us an endpoint of .4 miles from the tank.  This is a much smaller area of risk, and would reduce the number of people at risk to around 1750.  This was determined by using the Census Bureau numbers for population per square mile in Mt. Gilead.   We always strive to maintain the highest degree of safety and security around our facilities.  In addition to the measures mentioned above, we always have emergency telephone, tank registration, and site numbers posted in case of an emergency.    While this release scenario is possible, it is still highly unlikely.  The most likely risk of release would be a hose rupturing, or torn off if attached to a leaving truck.  But in that situation, the excess flow valves would activate and the spill would be limited to just the couple of gallons contained in the hose.  This would limit the risk of 
exposure to just the immediate area.  
As a result of our safety measures and the precautions taken, we are happy to say we have had no past accident history.  While we are proud of our safe history, we are not complacent about a safe future.  We continually update our employees with annual training and tests as well as make constant reviews and inspections.  We also make sure that we are always in compliance with all of the rules and regulations that we are subject to.  As a side note, we are also completely Y2K ready.   
Emergency Response Plan -  We have an entire emergency response plan established and ready if the need arises.  It has been deemed that the Mt. Gilead Fire Department will be the primary responder and will be in charge of any emergency situations.   We are also in contact with the Morrow County Emergency Planning Commitee as well as the local Sheriff, Police etc..  Our employees have been trained to know where to go and what to do in case of an emergency.  We also h 
ave good relationships with utilities and contractors if need be, and have designated emergency coordinators in place to help keep things calm and to direct operations untile the Fire Department shows up.  We also have emergency procedures in place to help the coordinators deal with several different emergency situations.  We take safety very seriously, and our record reflects that.
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