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Your Environment. Your Health.

Publication Detail

Title: Beyond Texas City: the state of process safety in the unionized U.S. oil refining industry.

Authors: McQuiston, Thomas H; Lippin, Tobi Mae; Bradley-Bull, Kristin; Anderson, Joseph; Beach, Josie; Beevers, Gary; Frederick, Randy J; Frederick, James; Greene, Tammy; Hoffman, Thomas; Lefton, James; Nibarger, Kim; Renner, Paul; Ricks, Brian; Seymour, Thomas; Taylor, Ren; Wright, Mike

Published In New Solut, (2009)

Abstract: The March 2005 British Petroleum (BP) Texas City Refinery disaster provided a stimulus to examine the state of process safety in the U.S. refining industry. Participatory action researchers conducted a nation-wide mail-back survey of United Steelworkers local unions and collected data from 51 unionized refineries. The study examined the prevalence of highly hazardous conditions key to the Texas City disaster, refinery actions to address those conditions, emergency preparedness and response, process safety systems, and worker training. Findings indicate that the key highly hazardous conditions were pervasive and often resulted in incidents or near-misses. Respondents reported worker training was insufficient and less than a third characterized their refineries as very prepared to respond safely to a hazardous materials emergency. The authors conclude that the potential for future disasters plagues the refining industry. In response, they call for effective proactive OSHA regulation and outline ten urgent and critical actions to improve refinery process safety.

PubMed ID: 19778828 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Disaster Planning/organization & administration; Disasters; Extraction and Processing Industry/organization & administration*; Guidelines as Topic; Humans; Inservice Training/organization & administration; Labor Unions*; Occupational Health; Petroleum*; Safety Management/organization & administration*; United States; United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration/organization & administration

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