Ryan Foods - Executive Summary
RYAN FOODS |
RISK MANAGEMENT PROGRAM
1. General accidental release and prevention policy of Ryan Foods.
At Ryan Foods processing facility we utilize anhydrous ammonia as a refrigerant during our dairy
product manufacturing process. Anhydrous ammonia is considered hazardous by the
Environmental Protection Agency. The same properties that make ammonia a valuable refrigerant
also makes it necessary to observe certain safety precautions during it's use to prevent exposure to
our workers, the surrounding community and the environment.
It is our policy at Ryan Foods to implement the requirements of the Risk Management Program
by managing and operating this facility in full compliance with all applicable federal and state
regulations that we are governed by. The objective is to minimize the risk of an accidental release
of hazardous materials. Safety depends directly on our proper handl
ing of ammonia. Our plant
personnel have been trained on the equipment operating procedures and the various safety devices
that are incorporated in our facility to prevent the possibility of accidental releases.
2. Stationary source and regulated substance handled.
Ryan Foods, 100 East Chestnut Street, Murray, Kentucky, operates a refrigeration system
utilizing anhydrous ammonia as the primary refrigerant. Mechanical refrigeration is a
thermodynamic process where the refrigerant, ammonia, is used as a heat exchanging fluid to
maintain a desired temperature in an enclosed environment. The refrigeration cycle consists of
evaporation, compression, condensation and expansion. Evaporation and condensation are
designed to alter the quantity of energy associated with the refrigerant. Compression and
expansion are designed to change the availability of the associated energy. The refrigeration cycle
is a closed loop process. The ammonia cycle utilizes fluid temperature, pressure and latent h
vaporization for cooling. The refrigeration system uses this phenomenon to remove heat from a
desired space, and then to discard that heat through condensation, to an area where it is of no
Ryan Foods facility uses ammonia refrigeration to maintain processing, storage room and product
tank temperatures required for the processing and storage of our product. There are
approximately 250 employees at this facility, including hourly and salary personnel. They
manufacture and prepare shipment of refrigerated dairy products via truck approximately 24
hours a day, seven days a week.
The potential hazards that could lead to an accidental release of the ammonia include, but are not
limited to, equipment failure, damage to piping, damage to equipment, human error, etc.
Although ammonia is a colorless, tasteless liquid, it's dominant characteristic is it's pungent,
distinct odor. Persons exposed to ammonia will not voluntarily stay in areas of even small
ns, although these levels would not normally result in any health risks. Risks from
accidental exposure to ammonia in a vapor state are irritations to the eyes, nose and throat. The
extent of irritation depends on the exposure amount and length of time exposed.
Ammonia is classified non-flammable by the Department of Transportation. Ammonia will burn,
but only in a very narrow concentration level when accompanied with a constant ignition source.
3. Worst case and alternate case release scenarios including administrative and
engineering controls to limit/ prevent accidental release.
Worst case scenario depicts continuous source leak from the Controlled Pressure Receiver (CPR)
located inside the machine room. This vessels normal operating level approximately 50% of it's
total capacity. Engineering controls which limit the liquid level to a maximum of 80% at any time.
Considering the "catastrophic" possibility does exist for this vessel to release it's entire contents, engineering
controls incorporated into the system would normally
prevent such a release.
Alternate release scenario is represented by the release of ammonia vapor from a safety relief
valve (SRV) due to an over-pressurization condition on the accumulator vessel located within the
machine room. The indicated relief valve would be performing exactly as it is designed to do
during an over-pressurization condition. Valve would open to relieve the over-pressure and vent
into the atmosphere via the roof vent pipe.
The following administrative and engineering controls are in place at Ryan Foods.
These controls are designed to eliminate, or reduce the possibilities of an accidental release
from the refrigeration system.
* Electronic ammonia detection installed in compressor room, upper and lower coolers.
Alarm system activates a local audible alarm to alert plant personnel of the potential ammonia leak
in the monitored areas.
* High liquid level switches are configured to accumulato
rs. High level switches will shut
down associated compressor operation during a high level condition.
* All compressors are configured with critical safety controls (high pressure, low pressure,
high oil temp cut-outs, etc.) to shut down the respective compressor in the event of an abnormal
* Safety Relief Valves are configured to all pressure vessels, condensers and compressor
oil separators to eliminate over pressurization conditions in those associated pieces of equipment.
* Periodic Maintenance Program is contracted through a reputable refrigeration company
to ensure the refrigeration system and it's components are kept in optimum mechanical and
operating status. Weekly inspections are conducted by the refrigeration contractor. Daily rounds
are made by plant personnel to verify proper equipment operation.
4. Five-year accident history.
Ryan Foods facility has had no significant accidental releases to report over the last five years.
ergency Action Program
The purpose of the Ryan Foods Emergency Action Plan is to:
1. Minimize exposure to our employees and the surrounding community in the event of a
hazardous material release or spill.
2. Assure the safe emergency evacuation of the plant in the instance that it is required.
3. Provide for prompt medical attention to any employees who become seriously injured
or ill at work.
4. Facility management has developed an Emergency Response Plan to ensure a fast and
efficient response in the event of an accidental release of hazardous materials.
Our Emergency Action Plan currently meets requirements as set forth in OSHA 29 CFR 1910.38,
Employee Emergency and Fire Prevention Plans.