Celanese Chemicals, Inc. - Bucks, Alabama - Executive Summary
At Celanese, we are dedicated to being an industry leader in protecting the environment, the health, and safety of both our employees and the communities in which we operate. Like our community neighbors, the people who work at the Bucks site want a clean, safe environment, with no illnesses or injuries at work, home, or play. That is why Celanese has a "zero incident" goal. We are committed to reducing emissions and continuously improving our performance toward zero injuries and zero environmental and process incidents. |
The Celanese Bucks site began operations in 1970. We have 100 employees, plus an average of 50 resident contractors. We manufacture four amine products for Celanese. We operate production facilities owned by Clariant, a Swiss based specialty chemical company, and we provide manufacturing services for IB Nitrogen, a subsidiary of a Canadian fertilizer company.
The Celanese amine products are:
These products are used by other chemical companies to make herbicides, insecticides, and pharmaceuticals.
The Clariant products are:
These products are used in the textile, pulp and paper, food, and wine industries.
The IB Nitrogen product is:
This product is a slow-release specialty fertilizer used on golf courses and turf farms. It is also used in plant nurseries for growing ornamentals such as azaleas and poinsettias.
The EPA's Risk Management Plan provides an excellent vehicle for continued dialogue with the people that live and work around the Celanese Bucks site. The Celanese Bucks Plant participates in a local community advisory panel and works with other area industrial facilities to promote safety in our operations. The LeMoyne Community Advisory Panel and the LeMoyne Industrial Park companies are recognized by local, state, and national organizations for outstanding coop
eration. This continued partnership ensures that the community where we all live and work will be a safe place now and in the future.
The plant has a site director (plant manager) who oversees all plant activities. The site director oversees the plant management council. The plant management council members include four hourly plant operations personnel, one from each of the main operating areas. The other members of the plant management council include the members of plant management staff. The staff includes an occupational safety manager, process safety manager, environmental manager, industrial hygienist, production manager for Celanese operations, production manager for Clariant operations, production manager for IB Nitrogen operations, financial controller, and maintenance/project engineers.
Production units are organized in teams. All plant employees must attend at least one safety meeting per month. All plant operators are included in a rotation to
conduct a safety meetings. Safety meetings include training on regulatory requirements and plant specific issues. Testing is conducted in safety meetings to insure the information is understood.
Plant operators are trained as part of the BEST team (the Bucks Emergency Response Team). They learn the specifics of emergency response command, emergency response techniques, and conduct drills.
What is RMP?
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established regulations that require Celanese and many other companies to file a Risk Management Plan (RMP) by June 21, 1999. The Celanese Bucks Plant has 5 chemicals on a list of 140 chemicals developed by the EPA. All companies that use, make or store a minimum quantity of these chemicals must meet these regulations.
Celanese was already complying with most of the EPA's requirements for RMP through our Process Safety Management Program and to comply with the OSHA 1910.119, (the OSHA Process Safety Regulation). The requirements alre
ady in place were:
Develop and implement a risk management system.
Conduct hazard assessments of all processes.
Implement accident prevention requirements.
Develop an emergency response program that is coordinated with local agencies.
Track and analyze incidents to prevent reoccurrence.
The RMP regulations have a new requirement to develop worst case and alternate case scenarios and make them available to the public.
Celanese Bucks RMP
Worst Case Scenarios:
The EPA has made it easy to develop this scenario by providing a simple procedure for calculating the quantity of chemical that could be released and the distance it could travel.
Assume that your largest tank of listed chemical breaks open and spills all of its contents in 10 minutes.
Determine the maximum distance where there is concern for the public being exposed, as established by the EPA.
Listed chemical Maximum Distance
Sulfur Dioxide 25 miles
Propionitrile 13 miles
Cyclohexylamine 1.4 miles
Isopropylamine 1.2 miles
Alternate Release Scenario:
The Worst Case Scenarios are meant to represent the worst possible incident. Additionally, RMP requires each site to determine a more likely scenario that could potentially impact the public. These are called the Alternate Release Scenarios.
Listed chemical Maximum distance
Sulfur Dioxide 1.4 miles
Ammonia 0.6 miles
Propionitrile 1.2 miles
Cyclohexylamine 0.2 miles
Isopropylamine 0.5 miles
Plant 5 Year Accident History:
RMP requires us to tell the public about accidents involving the listed chemicals that resulted in injuries or serious on-site or off-site impact. Going beyond that, we are giving you the history of all other releases that were reported to regulators (reported to ADEM - Alabama Department of Environmental Management).
Accident 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999YTD May
RMP 0 0 0 1 0 0
All Other 3 6 5 0 0 2
The 1997 RMP accident involved a painter who inhaled isopropylamine vapor and missed one day of work. There was a rail car fire in 1996 which was a significant incident but it did not involve an RMP chemical. There has never been a Worst Case Scenario type event in our 29 year history at Bucks.
How We Keep Our Plant Safe:
People: Our Most Valuable Safety Resource
1. All plant operators are trained and certified in the jobs they do.
2. All employees have the authority to shut down any process or stop any job, in order to maintain safe operation.
3. A self-paced training program covers job specific tasks, principles of chemical processing, safety, and regulatory issues.
Equipment: Maintained in Safe Condition
1. All plant process equipment is subjected to mechanical integrity inspections to look for corrosion or wear.
2. Safety devices such
as pressure relief valves and shutdown systems are inspected and tested on a regular basis.
3. A thermographic camera allows us to check for temperature deviations in equipment, check for electrical faults, and verify levels.
4. Glass level gauges have been replaced with metal, magnetically-coupled gauges.
Safety Systems: Protective Safety Net
1. All storage tanks and process vessels are protected against over-pressure by safety relief valves, much like the safety relief valve on your home water heater.
2. Process safety systems are programmed in our process control computers. If a designated level, pressure, temperature, or other parameter goes out of range, the process will shut down automatically.
3. Video surveillance cameras are installed to help operators monitor the processes.
4. Gas detectors are installed to warn of leaks. Our SO2 gas detection system will automatically stop loading operations.
5. Oxygen detectors protect the integrity of key equipment including va
rious boiler, compressor, and reactor operations.
6. All plant modifications and procedure changes undergo a management of change process that involves operations, maintenance, engineering, and management review.
Prepared: For Emergency Response
1. Plant operators are trained in emergency response, fire fighting, and must pass a physical agility test.
2. The plant has an extensive fire fighting system with deluge systems, monitor nozzles, hoses, foam generating capability, and water reservoir.
3. The plant has a portable emergency command vehicle complete with air monitoring equipment, radio and cellular phone systems, emergency response, and decontamination materials.
4. The plant alarm system is tested weekly to ensure that employees know how to use it.
5. Emergency response personnel are trained in first aid and CPR.