WTU Oklaunion Power Station - Executive Summary
RMP DATA ELEMENT - Executive Summary |
WTU Oklaunion Power Station
Oklaunion Power Station is a single unit coal fueled power generating facility in the West Texas Utilities (WTU) subsidiary, which includes a total of 12 generating facilities throughout west Texas. This site is located in Wilbarger County near the city of Vernon, TX. The facility has 92 full time employees.
West Texas Utilities (WTU) is an investor-owned utility. The company's common stock is held by Central and South West Corporation, a registered public holding company headquartered in Dallas, Texas and Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The facility has a total generation of approximately 430 mw. It burns coal as the primary fuel. The unit is a General Electric steam turbine generator with a Foster Wheeler boiler installed in 1986.
The following information is part of a complete Risk Management Plan (RMP) that was prepared for the WTU Oklaunion Power Station. The information includes accident prevention and safety programs, eme
rgency preparedness and response programs, chemical description, five year accidental release history, alternative release scenario and the worst case scenario. The sharing of this type of information is a means to improve community safety, not a prediction of the probability that either a worst case or more likely scenario would ever occur. These scenarios are estimates required by the Environmental Protection Agency and are used to illustrate the importance for risk reduction, safety, prevention and emergency preparedness and response.
The Oklaunion Power Station has been producing electricity for about 13 years. During this time, there have not been any chlorine or ammonia releases that adversely impacted the plant or the surrounding community.
The release scenarios, a worst case scenario and an alternative release scenario, are designed to be exercises which calculate the potential impact on the community based upon extreme conditions defined by the governing agency, the Enviro
nmental Protection Agency (EPA). A worst case scenario is defined as the complete release of the largest container of the chemical over 10 minutes under weather conditions that would allow the chemical to travel as far as possible. The distance(s) used in this plan are from the EPA Offsite Consequence Analysis Guide (May 1996). It also assumes that none of the site's mechanical controls or safety systems is operational for this theoretical exercise. However, the laws of physical science do not allow a complete release of the chemical as described in the worst case scenario.
The worst case scenario for the Oklaunion Power Station involves a cylinder containing 2,000 pounds of chlorine or a tank containing 45,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia. The entire quantity is released from one of these containers vaporizing over a 10 minute period and the resulting vapor cloud travels down wind. A level of concern to the community extends 3.0 miles down wind for chlorine and 3.6 miles down wind
Given these unrealistic guidelines of a worst case scenario, more realistic scenarios or alternative release scenarios were also developed. These scenarios involve smaller releases and allow a site's safety systems to work. The alternative release scenario may be used by local government and industry to prepare emergency response plans.
The alternative release scenario for the Oklaunion Power Station involves the failure of a one-fourth inch pigtail or similar connection leaking chlorine for approximately 60 minutes. The resulting cloud extends 0.3 miles down wind. A similar alternative release scenario for ammonia involves the failure of a 2-inch diameter connection with a resulting cloud extending 0.5 miles down wind.
WTU chlorinating and ammonia systems are built and installed with safety controls designed to prevent accidental releases. Some of the typical safety equipment and systems used at the plant include:
- Storage cylinders meeting American Society of Mec
hanical Engineering requirements
- Automatic shut-off devices
- Interlocks and relief valves
- Specifically designed pressure gauges, fittings, connections, tubing and piping.
Plant employees, including plant operators, electricians, mechanics, and laboratory technicians, receive training in the operation and maintenance of the water treatment system. This training includes emphasis on:
- Specific safe work practices
- Routine operating procedures
- Audit and inspection procedures
- Emergency operation including shut down
- Alarms and emergency notification procedures.
WTU has an established Preventative Maintenance Procedure specifically developed for the water treatment system. This procedure requires:
- Periodic inspection and testing of all mechanical systems
- Detailed documentation of all inspection and maintenance activity
- Documentation of equipment deficiencies
- Timely and appropriate repair of all deficiencies.
A Process Safety Management System has b
een specifically developed at this plant in compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act Process Safety Management rule. This management system requires:
- An initial and periodic analysis of engineering and administrative controls
- Investigation procedures designed to resolve and correct potential incidents
- Formal audits performed by trained individuals with knowledge of the systems.
All Plant personnel handling chlorine and ammonia are specially trained. This training includes:
- Emergency shutdown
- Emergency operation of the systems
- Hazards of chlorine and ammonia
- Safety procedures to be followed during normal operations
- Emergency Response Procedures
- Notification procedures
- Evacuation procedures.
Periodic inspection of the equipment is mandatory. Repairs are required on all items identified as defective during inspections.
If a release occurs, only trained Emergency Response Personnel will respond to assess and stop the leak. In all cases, ne
cessary actions will be taken to control the release of chlorine and ammonia.
- The Plant Control Room will be notified immediately if a leak is detected.
- Control Room personnel will coordinate emergency response procedures.
- Emergency response procedures may include:
- Notification of authorities
- Evacuation of plant personnel
- Evacuation of public
- Notification of plant and/or company managers.
West Texas Utilities (WTU) is committed to providing electricity to west Texas. We understand our responsibility to follow federal, state and local regulations in the most effective manner possible. WTU is doing its part to provide a safe environment for the residents in our community.