Pitchford Elevator Co. - Executive Summary

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The Pitchford Elevator Co. location at Richview Illinois has had Anhydrous Ammonia on the site in excess of thirty(30) years without a reportable release.  This is a clear indication to the dedication of the facility management to maintenance and safety. 
This location is a full service agricultural facility with grain storage facilities, dry and liquid fertilizer materials, agricultural chemicals. seed, and offers custom application of both fertilizer and chemicals.  The facility has three(3) Anhydrous Ammonia storage tanks and over one hundred(100) 1000 gallon nurse tanks to deliver the ammonia from the storage tanks to the local farmers for use.  The facility services growers with materials over an area of a twenty(20) mile radius of the loaction. 
Under a worse case scenario for the location 140,000 pounds of material would be discharged in a ten minute period if the storage tank was at it's greatest capacity.  The facility used the Degadis-tfi model for making it's effected area c 
alculations.  The distance to the end point of the release would be 1.16 miles from the tank location.  Within this area there would be about four hundred (400) persons that could be inpacted.  With the prevailing southwest winds at the location fewer than twenty five (25) live to the northwest of the location that are within the 1.16 mile inpact area. 
The alternative release scenario for the location involves a failure of a transfer hose during transport unloading into the storage tank.  Again the Degadis-tfi model was used for making effected area calculations.  Under this model there would be a release of twelve thousand (12,000) pounds over a 2 minute period.  The effected area for this situation would be .56 miles from the hose failure.  Within this area one hundred (100) persons would be effected if the material spread equally in all directions.  The amount of the release should be less than the model indicates due to excess flow valves on both the storage tank and the transport 
tank that would close in case of such a failure.  There is also a back-flow prevention valve at the hose hookup point on the storage tank that would close in case of a hose failure.  Should the excess flow valve on the transport fail to close in this situation there is a manual emergency shutoff valve located on the transport. 
This facility operates under the guidelines set forth by the Illinois Department of Agricultrue for Anhydrous Ammonia facilities.  The facility is inspected by the Department at least annually and is maintained to their specifications.  We are also inspected each year by an inspectior of our insurance company and keep the facility in compliance with their specifications. Some of the requirments of the insurance company are stricter than those of the Department of Agriculture.  In addition to the requirments of the inspections listed above we have an ongoing maintenance program that insures the tanks and associated equipment are always in the best of condition.  
As a part of this program all dated items such as hoses, valves, and relief valves are replaced by their expiration date.  In addition all parts of the ammonia facility are inspected during daily activities at the location. 
The facility management is confident in the process of training and maintenance that is used at the location.  As an indicator of the success of the program we have had no accidents to report over the last five years. 
Our emergency response program is coordinated through local agencies.  There are systems in place for notification of the local agencies in case of the need.  The employees of the location are trained as to whom to notify in case of an emergency.  This training is done on an annual basis by an outside consulting company and also as ongoing on the job training by the facility management.  There are postings of emergency phone numbers at phone locations on the site so that they are available whenever needed. 
There is an ongoing updating of equipment  
at the facility to ensure that the safety of the location will always be improved.  As inprovements to the equipment are offered to the industry the facility will incorporate the improvements if we feel they will enhance the facility safety.  The facility will also continue to update the training procedures of employees that work with the ammonia.
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