The New Earth Company - Executive Summary
New Earth has 17,500 pounds ( total Capacity) and 16,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia in the refrigeration system at 7859 Short Road facility. The system was built in 1996 under the direction of PermaCold Engineering. It incorporated the latest in technology and conformed with all safety codes. Alarm sensors were installed to go off at 35 ppm. A second alarm sensor goes off at 250 ppm. This also turns on the large evacuation fans. These fans vent the ammonia out through the roof into the atmosphere. Our refrigeration department responds to the 35 ppm sensor alarm and will take a reading of the ammonia levels. If they determine that they need help, they will call Klamath Alarm, who will page our company hazmat response team. From 35 ppm to 800 ppm, our company will handle the situation. Once the level reaches 800 ppm, we will call for assistance from the State Hazmat Team. The Cell Tech/New Earth hazmat team is trainied to respond to ammonia incidents at the State Industrial Hazmat Tech |
nician Level. Quarterly trainings are conducted by the State Hazmat Team trainer, Monte Keady. Annual drills are a joint response effort, with the last one conducted on 5/11/99. All floor plans, and any updates to our written response plan is given to the State Response team. Annual facility tours are also given to the State Team.
New Earth has the emergency equipment for a A- level response. Equipment includes- 4- A level suits, 4- SCBA's, decontamination equipment, escape masks, lap top computors, hand held radios, ladders, fans, tarps, hoses, heavy equipment if needed, and B level suits. Hazmat team members are trained on the equipment and given annual physicals.
In our worse case scenerio, we have considered a liquid leak from the subcooler caused by a manlift catching a 3/4" top liquid feed line. This would result in approximately 16,000 pounds of liquid anhydrous ammonia leaking at 1600 pounds per minute. System would empty in 10 minutes.
Prevention methods include daily, w
eekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual inspections performed by the refrigeration department. A computer program reminds the department of needed scheduled maintenance.
New Earth has been under consultation by OR- OSHA for Process Safety Management, and is still under that consultation. A process hazard analysis has been conducted and recommendations have been made. They included administrative controls, developing line breaking procedures, restricting areas where forklift/manlifts are authorized to operate, more maintenance checks, none of which required a management of change procedure.
Refrigeration employees receive constant training and updates as well as annual training for all employees who work on or near the ammonia system. The most recent was conducted 4/15/99.
Quarterly safety walkthrough's are done by the Safety Committee. Corrections are completed by the refrigeration department. MSDS books are posted in the engine rooms. Piping and Instrumentation Diagrams are post
ed with legends for valve numbering system. All chemicals are labeled.
Only one accident has happened at this facility on January 29,1997. It was a maintenance error that was corrected immediately. There were no injuries to personnel. Equipment damage was approxamiately $30,000. Employess were evacuated and upcomming shifts cancelled as a protection measure. The captured onsite wastewater was diluted and neutralized by the Research and Development Department of Cell Tech/ New Earth and transported to the city facility. The liquid was covered with a tarp and had disapated by morning. All authorities were notified and reports sent in as required by law.
The Safety Department just received the Oregon Governor's Safety Award. The refrigeration supervisor is a part of the safety team.