North Ice Cream Plant, Le Mars - Executive Summary

| Accident History | Chemicals | Emergency Response | Registration | Source | Executive Summary |

A Risk Management Program (RMP) has been developed and  prepared for use and storage of anhydrous ammonia for the refrigeration system at the Wells Dairy North  Ice Cream Plant in Le Mars Iowa..  The Risk Management Program (RMP) meet and address the requirements of Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations Part 68. 
This Executive Summary briefly describes the following elements: 
The accidental release prevention and emergency response policies at the stationary source; 
The stationary source and regulated substances handled;  
The worst-case release scenario(s) and the alternative release scenario(s), including administrative controls and mitigation measures to limit the distances for each reported scenario;  
The general accidental release prevention program and chemical-specific prevention steps;  
The five-year accident history;  
The emergency response program; and 
Planned changes to improve safety. 
To address concerns of an accidental release prevention and emergency response all plant  
and field personnel are trained in ammonia emergency response procedures and use of appropriate protective equipment.  Refresher training and emergency response drills are conducted on a periodic basis to ensure personnel are equipped, trained, prepared, and practiced in responding to ammonia emergencies.   
As a result of information gathered during preparation of this Risk Management Program, Wells Dairy, Inc. (WDI) is committing additional resources to further increase employee awareness and equipment reliability and to establish operator training and preventive maintenance programs.  As a demonstration of the WDI's high degree of commitment to public safety and service, WDI is taking action to decrease the risk of ammonia exposure to the public by implementing recommendations made during the Process Hazards Analysis and Off-site Consequence Analysis. 
Anhydrous ammonia is used as a refrigerant in the WDI Le Mars  facility refrigeration system.  The liquid is circulated as needed to 
the air units, shell and tube chillers  where heat is absorbed and removed from the medium.  The anhydrous ammonia refrigeration system is a closed loop industrial refrigeration system.  The ammonia is not used or mixed in any manner with other chemical processes. 
A "Worst-Case Scenario Offsite Consequence Analysis" and an "Alternative Scenario Offsite Consequence Analysis" were performed identifying the public and environmental receptors within the toxic endpoint concentration radius of 200 ppm.  The results are mitigated by the fact that all the vessels and majority of the piping are inside the Le Mars facility's building.  
Emergency response is discussed in Section 5 of the RMP.  Wells Dairy, Inc. has a detailed Emergency Response Plan (ERP) for their facility  The purpose of this plan is to provide the means for rapidly determining the appropriate response for any emergency that may develop at the facility such as an accidental release of anhydrous ammonia.  WDI conducts schedul 
ed drills of the emergency response plan. 
A  five year accident history report has not been prepared since there have been no reportable accidents in the past 5 years.  To prevent and/or minimize any potential future release of anhydrous ammonia, Wells Dairy, Inc.  is implementing a detailed Process Safety Management program (Preventative Program 3).  The Preventative Program 3 provides an extensive maintenance and operator/mechanic training to ensure the  system's mechanical integrity is maintained for the life of the covered process.  Program 3 also incorporates administrative controls when modifications are made to the covered process (ammonia refrigeration system), so the training and preventative programs are updated as the system expands and changes. 
Wells Dairy; Inc.  will incorporate or address any recommendations resulting from the Process Hazard Analysis, Offsite Consequences, incident investigations and program audits.  The flexibility of the program allows WDI to respond  
effectively to prevent or minimize any potential of exposing WDI employees, the surrounding public, and/or the environment to a release of anhydrous ammonia.
Click to return to beginning