CONDEA Vista Company - Executive Summary
3271 LDEQ Facility ID Number |
CONDEA Vista, Inc. Lake Charles Chemical Complex
Risk Management Plan
CONDEA Vista's Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) has a long-standing commitment to worker and public safety. This commitment is demonstrated by the resources invested in accident prevention, training of highly qualified personnel, and considering safety in the design, installation, operation and maintenance of our processes. Our policy is to implement reasonable controls to prevent chemical releases. However, if a release does occur, our trained personnel will respond to control, contain, and mitigate the release.
CONDEA Vista is committed to Responsible Care? voluntary initiative for safe management of chemicals. CONDEA Vista follows the Responsible Care? Code of Management Practice, which is integral to the implementation of the CONDEA Vista Environmental and Health and Safety policies. The Responsible Care? Community Awareness Code of Management Practice and
CONDEA Vista's Community Awareness and Emergency Response policies are designed to assist emergency preparedness and for faster community right to know.
CONDEA Vista's Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) located in Westlake, Louisiana uses natural gas and by-products from refinery operations to produce specialty chemicals for detergents and cosmetics. The chemical complex uses or produces several regulated flammables such as ethylene, propane, butane, propylene, ethane, butene, hydrogen, methane, and pentane. Chemicals maintained on site at the LCCC listed on the EPA's list of toxic chemicals and are above EPA's threshold quantity are ethylene oxide and hydrogen fluoride. Other regulated chemicals used in our process, which are stored below the threshold quantity, are sulfur dioxide and ammonia.
In November of 1999, CONDEA Vista's Lake Charles Chemical Company (LCCC) sold all interest in the Vinyl Chloride Monomer process. As a result of the sale, CONDEA Vista is required to re-
submit its Risk Management Plan.
The worse case scenario (WCS) associated with a toxic substance handled at the Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) involves catastrophic failure of the ethylene oxide storage vessel with the resulting release of 290,000 pounds. Although we have numerous controls to prevent such a release and to manage the consequences, no credit for administrative controls or passive mitigation measures was taken into account when evaluating this scenario. Look up tables published by USEPA were used to determine the maximum distance to the toxic endpoint. Based on these Look-up tables, maximum distance to the scenario endpoint of 50-ppm (milligrams per liter) for the worse case scenario is 12 miles.
The alternative case scenarios (ARS) for ethylene oxide is the failure of a ? inch nozzle on a process line. This ARS results in the release of 12,000 pounds of ethylene oxide over a 20 minute period. The 20-minute time period represents the maximum time requir
ed for unit personnel to block in, isolate, and empty the process, thus stopping the release.
The maximum distance the toxic endpoint of 50 ppm as determined by PHAST (a dense phase dispersion computer simulation program) is 0.53 miles.
The alternative case scenarios for hydrogen fluoride is the failure of a ? inch connection on a process line. This ARS results in the release of 675 pounds of hydrogen fluoride over a 10 minute period. The 10 minute time period represents the time required to block in and the isolate the process line to empty, thus stopping the release. The results given by PHAST for the maximum distance to the toxic endpoint of 20 ppm (parts per million) at 0.64 miles.
No credit was taken for the installed water curtain. If credit had been taken for this safety equipment, the distance to the toxic endpoint would be less than 700 feet or such that no one outside the plant boundary would be exposed to hydrogen fluoride.
The WCS (worse case scenario) associated w
ith the release of a flammable substance involves the individual release of the largest inventory of two regulated substances, in a single vessel, (as allowed by administrative controls) of 1,3-Butadiene and Pentane. No credit was taken for active mitigation measures when evaluating these scenarios. Therefore, the maximum allowable single vessel inventory allowed to release under established administrative controls for 1,3-Butadiene is 370,000 pounds and 180,000 pounds for Pentane. Each inventory is assumed to vaporize and ignite, resulting in a vapor cloud explosion (VCE) which would result in a maximum distance to the 1-psi overpressure endpoint of .57 miles for 1,3-Butadiene and .45 miles for Pentane. The two worse case scenarios are due to different affected offsite areas.
The ARS for flammable substances at the LCCC over a 60-minute time period (the time required to empty the tank) is the release of 160,000 pounds of pentane from a 2-inch diameter hole in a pentane storage
vessel. This release is assumed to result in a VCE. The distance to the 1-psi overpressure endpoint for this ARS scenario is 0.13 miles.
Process Safety Information
The LCCC (Lake Charles Chemical Complex) maintains a variety of technical documents that are used to help maintain safe operation of the processes. These documents address chemical properties and associated hazards, limits for key process parameters, specific chemical inventories, and equipment design basis/configuration information. Specific departments within the chemical complex are assigned responsibility for maintaining up-to-date process safety information. Employees are provided training on how to locate the information from various computer terminals located throughout the chemical complex.
Chemical specific information, including exposure hazards and emergency response/exposure considerations, is provided in material safety data sheets (MSDS). This information is supplemented by documents that address known
corrosion concerns and known hazards associated within inadvertent mixing of specific chemicals. For the different process areas, the chemical complex has documented safety related limits for specific process parameters (e.g. temperature, pressure, composition, etc.). The chemical complex ensures that the processes are maintained within these limits using process controls, monitoring instruments, protective instrument systems, and highly trained personnel.
The chemical complex also maintains an electronic database, that is accessible by both employees and contractor supervision, which provides information about the design and construction of process equipment. This information includes materials of construction, design pressure and temperature ratings, electrical classification, etc. This information in combination with written procedures and trained personnel, provides a basis for establishing inspection and maintenance activities as well as for evaluating proposed process and facil
ity changes to ensure that safety features in the process are not compromised.
Process Hazard Analysis
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) has a comprehensive program to help ensure the hazards associated with the various processes are identified and controlled. Within this program, each process is systematically examined to identify hazards and ensure that adequate controls are in place to manage these hazards.
The LCCC primarily uses the hazard and operability (HAZOP) analysis technique to perform these evaluations. HAZOP analysis is recognized as one of the most systematic and thorough hazard evaluation techniques. The analysis are conducted using a team of people who have operating and maintenance experience as well as engineering expertise. The team identifies and evaluates hazards of the process as well as accident prevention and mitigation measures, and makes suggestions for additional prevention and/or mitigation measures when the team believes such measures are nec
The PHA team findings are made available to people associated with the process unit for comments and forwarded to local and corporate management for resolution. Implementation of mitigation options in response to PHA findings is based on a relative ranking assigned by the PHA team. This ranking helps ensure that potential accident scenarios assigned the highest rank receive immediate attention. All approved mitigation options being implemented in response to PHA findings are tracked until they are complete. The final resolution of each finding is documented and retained.
Operators, supervisors, and plant engineers work together to develop and maintain operating procedures. These procedures define how tasks related to process operations are safely performed. At the Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC), operating procedures: (1) are used to train employees and (2) serve as reference guides for appropriate actions to take during both normal operations
and process upsets. Operating procedures include:
? Steps for safely conducting activities
? Applicable process safety information, such as safe operating limits,
? Safety and health considerations, such as chemical hazards, personnel protective equipment required and steps to take if exposed to a particular chemical.
Plant personnel develop and maintain operating procedures that cover all phases of operations, including initial startup, normal operation, normal shutdown, emergency shutdown, startup following a turnaround or emergency shutdown, and temporary operations.
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) trains its workers to safely and effectively perform their assigned tasks. The training program includes both initial and refresher training.
All new operators receive six weeks of comprehensive training before ever being assigned to a specific operating unit. This training includes training on specific types of equipment, such as pumps and compressors, general o
verview of the process, properties and hazard substances in the process, and detailed review of complex procedures, such as, safe work practices and of emergency response. Oral reviews and written tests are used to verify that employees understand the training material before a new employee can report to a process unit. Once a new employee reports to a particular process unit, he receives detailed training with respect to process specific procedures. Once the new hire has demonstrated, through oral review and written tests, mastery of process specific operating procedures and for specific tasks, he is allowed to begin work in a specific operating unit.
Refresher training covers (1) a general overview of the process, (2) the properties and hazards of the substances in the process and, (3) a detailed review of the process operating procedures and safe work practices. Oral review and written tests are used to verify that employees understand the training before an employee can resu
me work in the process. The operators have been consulted in safety meetings and through questionnaires regarding effectiveness and frequency of training. Recommendations are reviewed and changes to the training program are implemented as appropriate.
Management of Change
The Management of Change program for the LCCC evaluates and approves all proposed changes to chemicals, equipment, and procedures for covered processes to help ensure that a change does not negatively affect safe operations. Process changes that are determined to be a replacement in kind (e.g. replacing a valve with an identical valve) are allowed without completing a full management of change program. All other changes must be confirmed through a full management of change program to help ensure process safety information and procedures are updated, and affected employees are notified of the change.
Pre-Startup Safety Review (PSSRs)
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) conducts a safety review of a new or
modified process before the process is placed in service. The purpose of the PSSR is to ensure the safety features, procedures, personnel and equipment are appropriately prepared for startup prior to placing the equipment in service. The review provides one additional check to make sure construction is in accordance with the design specifications and that all supporting systems are operationally ready. The PSSR review team uses checklists to verify all aspects of readiness. A PSSR involves field verification of the construction and serves a quality assurance function by requiring verification that accident prevention program requirements are properly implemented.
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) has well established practices and procedures to maintain pressure vessels, piping systems, relief and vent systems, controls, emergency shutdown systems, and rotating equipment (pumps and compressors) in a safe operating condition. The basic aspects of this
program include (1) conducting training, (2) developing written procedures, (3) performing inspections and tests, (4) correcting identified deficiencies and, (5) applying quality assurance measures. In combination, these activities form a system that maintains the mechanical integrity of the process.
Maintenance personnel receive training on (1) an overview of the process, (2) safety and health hazards, (3) applicable maintenance procedures, (4) emergency response plans, and (5) applicable safe work practices. Written procedures help ensure that work is performed in consistent manner and provides basis for training. Inspections and tests are performed to help ensure that equipment functions as intended, and to verify that equipment is within acceptable limits (e.g. adequate wall thickness for pressure vessels). If a deficiency is identified, the equipment will be repaired in a timely manner. All outstanding deficiencies are tracked until such time a final solution has been impleme
nted and documented.
Another integral part of the mechanical integrity program is quality assurance. The LCCC incorporates quality assurance into equipment purchase and repairs. This helps ensure that new equipment is suitable for intended use and that proper materials and spare parts are used when repairs are made.
Safe Work Practices
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) has a long-standing safe work program in place to ensure worker safety. Examples of the program include (1) control of the entry/presence/exit of support personnel, (2) lockout/tagout procedures to ensure isolation of energy sources for equipment undergoing maintenance, (3) procedures for safe removal of hazardous materials before process piping or equipment is opened, (4) a permit and procedures to conduct spark producing activities (i.e, hot work), and (5) a permit and procedures to ensure that adequate precautions are in place before entry into a confined space. These procedures, along with training of a
ffected personnel, form a system to help ensure that operations and maintenance activities are performed safely.
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) investigates all incidents that could reasonably have resulted in a serious injury to personnel, the public, or the environment so similar incidents can be prevented. The LCCC trains employees to identify and report any incident requiring investigation. The investigation is initiated within 48 hours of the incident. Depending on the incident, an investigation team may be formed. Results of the investigation are documented and appropriate changes are made.
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) maintains a written employee participation program to help ensure that safety and environmental concerns of the plant workers are addressed. The plant encourages active participation of personnel in safety, health, and environmental activities at the plant. Employees are consulted and/or in
formed about all aspects of the RMP prevention program including PHA's (Process Hazard Analysis) and operating procedures.
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) audits the covered processes to be certain that the prevention program is effectively addressing safety, health, and environmental issues. The complex assembles an audit team that includes personnel knowledgeable in the processes. This team evaluates whether the prevention program satisfies the requirements of the RMP rule and whether the prevention program is sufficient to ensure safe operation of the complex. The results of the audit are documented, recommendations are resolved, and appropriate enhancements made to the operations of the LCCC.
Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) has established a program to help ensure that contractor activities are performed in a safe manner. This program reviews the safety record of the contractors to ensure the plant only hires contractors who can s
afely perform the desired task. The complex communicates to the contractor supervisor the hazards of the process on which they and their employees will work, the plants safe work practices, and the plants emergency response procedures. The plant requires that the contractor supervisors train each of their employees on hazards and procedures specific to the complex site. The plant periodically reviews contractors training documents and work performances to help ensure that safe practices are followed.
Five Year Accident History
The facility has experienced zero events in the period of June 1994 to present, which had offsite impacts. In addition, there was one event that did not result in any offsite consequences but did result in one minor onsite injury. The one event is as follows:
? October 24, 1999, less then 1 pound of Ethylene Oxide was released during a normal operating procedure. Injury to a unit operator due to exposure to the chemical occurred as a result of the release
Emergency Response Program
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) emergency response program has been developed to meet the emergency planning, response, and notification requirements of the following regulations:
? OSHA 29 CFR 1910.38 (a) - Employee Emergency Action Plans
? OSHA 29 CFR 1910.120 (q)-Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER)
? OSHA 29 CFR 1910.119 (n) Process Safety Management of Highly Hazardous Chemicals
? OSHA 29 CFR 1910 Subpart L-Fire Protection
? LADEQ LAC 33.1? 3901- Notification Regulations for Unauthorized Discharge
? LDPS Title 33, Part V, Subpart 2, Ch.101? 1011-Release Reporting
? EPA 40 CFR Part 302.6- Notification Requirements
? EPA 40 CFR part 355.40-Emergency Planning and Release Notification
? EPA 40 CFR Part 68- Risk Management Programs for Chemical Accidental Release Program
? EPA 40 CFR Part 355.30- Facility Coordinator and Emergency Response Plan
? EPA 40 CFR Part 112- Spill prevention, Control and Countermeasures Plan
CRA 302- List of Extremely Hazardous Substances
The emergency response strategy for the Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) is to prevent and/or control emergency situations via the use of engineering , design, and fixed protection systems. The plant has an Emergency Response Team that is available 24 hours per day, and trained to respond and take actions to contain, control, and mitigate any release that might occur. The team has access to on-site emergency equipment which is appropriate for situations that could possibly occur at the LCCC. In addition to the considerable on-site resources, the LCCC is a member of Calcasieu Mutual Aid. This membership allows the LCCC (if needed) to draw on the emergency response resources of other industries in the immediate area. The following is a partial listing of the equipment which is available for emergency response:
Firepumps w/ fixed firewater system
Dry Chemical Truck
Water Deluge Systems
Fixed Extinguishing Systems
Spill Response Unit
Emergency Response Team
Drills are conducted to assess the emergency response effort at the LCCC.
The CONDEA Vista Company Lake Charles Facility is a participant in the community planning process cooperating with the Calcasieu Parish Local Emergency Planning Committee. A copy of the plant's Emergency Response Plan has been forwarded to the Office of Emergency Preparedness per the requirements of 40 CFR 355.
Planned Changes to Improve Safety
The Lake Charles Chemical Complex (LCCC) constantly strives to improve safety and reduce risk through auditing, suggestions from employees, incident investigations, and the use of proper engineering standards and specifications.