Goodyear Houston Chemical Plant - Executive Summary
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY |
Chemical Safety Policy
Management at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, Houston Chemical Plant is committed to a policy of providing and maintaining a safe and healthy environment for our employees and surrounding communities and neighbors. The Houston Chemical Plant's Accidental Release Prevention programs prevent accidents at each stage of plant operation. New or expanded facilities are built to current engineering standards, and hazard reviews are conducted on all chemical processes. Process workers are trained and certified in detailed operating procedures. Equipment is regularly inspected to standards, and is an integral part of the preventive maintenance system.
Coordinated emergency response actions between the Houston Chemical Plant and local emergency officials are planned and practiced. By working together, the emergency response teams are prepared to take the necessary measures to protect the public if an incident occurs.
e Goodyear Houston Chemical Plant was built in 1943 by the U.S. government to produce synthetic rubber. After World War II, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company purchased the Houston plant from the government, and has since expanded and modernized the facility.
Synthetic rubber manufactured at the facility is called "Plioflex" rubber. To produce it, two petrochemicals, butadiene and styrene are reacted with several chemical agents in a soap and water solution. The reaction of butadiene and styrene to produce rubber gives off heat, and the temperature of reaction is controlled by the coolant anhydrous ammonia.
Another synthetic rubber made at this facility is called "Chemigum", and is produced by the reaction of butadiene and acrylonitrile. The Chemigum reaction gives off heat that is cooled using anhydrous ammonia.
Butadiene is a flammable substance that is stored under pressure in sufficient quantity to be regulated. Anhydrous ammonia and acrylonitrile are toxic substances that a
re also regulated.
Worst Case and Alternative Case Scenarios
The worst case toxic release scenario for the Houston plant involves a release of 25,000 lbs of anhydrous ammonia from a storage tank. This release has off-site impact. The distance to toxic endpoint is 1.9 miles as calculated using the EPA "OCA Guidance" document. Written operating procedures prevent more than 25,000 lbs from being present in the 50,000 lb. Tank. Corrosion monitoring of the vessel, careful control of changes to the process, and routine safety inspections make this worst case release scenario unlikely.
The alternative release scenario for anhydrous ammonia involves the failure of a process line component. The distance to toxic endpoint is 0.85 miles as calculated using the EPA "OCA Guidance" document.
An alternative release scenario for the chemical acrylonitrile involves the failure of a flange in a process line at the acrylonitrile storage tank. This release has off-site impact. A
concrete dike around the tank limits the exposed surface area of a pool and thus reduces the release rate. The distance to toxic endpoint is 0.36 miles as calculated using the EPA "OCA Guidance" document.
The worst case flammable release scenario for the Houston plant involves a release of 1,100,000 lbs of butadiene from a storage vessel. This release has off-site impact. The distance to endpoint is 0.83 miles as calculated using the EPA "OCA Guidance" document. Corrosion monitoring of the vessel, leak detection devices, careful control of changes to the process, and routine safety inspections make this worst case release scenario unlikely.
The alternative release scenario for butadiene involves the failure of a process line. The distance to endpoint is 0.13 miles as calculated using the EPA "OCA Guidance" document.
Accidental Release Prevention Program
The prevention program is guided by the OSHA Process Safety Management (PSM) regulation, and applies t
o process operations containing the chemicals butadiene, anhydrous ammonia, and acrylonitrile. Some of the more important aspects of the accidental release prevention program are:
7 Permitting systems for hot work, confined space and vehicle entry.
7 Process hazard Analysis of processes containing butadiene, anhydrous ammonia and acrylonitrile.
7 Training and certification program.
7 Mechanical Integrity Program including:
- Visual inspection of equipment.
- Corrosion monitoring of vessels and piping.
- Vibration analysis of pumps monthly.
- Routine testing of relief valves.
- Flare header scanning for process buildup.
7 Written operating instructions that include safe upper and lower process limits, and emergency shutdown procedures.
7 Leak Detection and Repair program covering piping components that are monitored quarterly.
Five Year Accident History
The Goodyear Houston Chemical Plant has had no accidental releases of chemicals causing off-site environmental impacts in the
last five years.
Emergency Response Program
The Goodyear Houston Chemical Plant is a member of the Channel Industrials Mutual Aid organization (CIMA), which provides emergency response assistance from neighboring plants. Goodyear conducts training and participates in practice drills with CIMA plant members.
The Goodyear emergency response teams are trained in firefighting, rescue, hazardous materials response, and emergency medical care.
Goodyear Houston is an active member of the Houston Local Emergency Planning Committee.
The Goodyear Houston Chemical Plant has programs and systems in place that result in continuous improvements in safety at the facility.