Today's News / Compliance / Facility Safety

BP to pay $13 million in penalties for Texas City refinery explosion

Solis: Settlement will help establish "a culture of safety" at BP

July 13, 2012
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+

BP HQThe long saga of the BP-OSHA struggle to resolve issues arising from the 2005 tragedy at the company’s Texas City refinery may finally be drawing to a close.

In an agreement announced yesterday, BP has agreed to pay $13,027,000 in penalties and to abate remaining safety violations by the end of 2012. The agreement resolves 409 of the 439 citations issued by the agency following the refinery fire and explosion, which killed 15 workers and injured 170 other people.

In 2005: OSHA cited BP for a then-record $21 million, and BP agreed to identify and correct safety deficiencies at the plant.

In 2009: A follow-up investigation four years later found improvements, but determined that the company had failed to correct many items. That led to OSHA issuing 270 failure-to-abate notices (with penalties of $30.7 million) and 439 willful violations of the agency’s PSM standard, including failing to follow industry-accepted engineering practices for pressure relief safety systems. The latter citations carried total proposed penalties of $30.7 million.

In 2010: BP agreed to pay a penalty of $50.6 million to resolve the failure-to-abate notices; to hire independent experts to monitor its efforts; to allocate $500 million to ensure safety at the Texas City refinery.

Yesterday: Under the agreement announced yesterday, all violations covered in this settlement have been corrected or will be corrected by Dec. 31, 2012, using the procedures established under the 2010 agreement.

Some 110 citations were withdrawn because BP provided additional documentation showing several pieces of equipment originally cited were not covered by the PSM standard, were out of service at the time of the inspection or met the applicable Recognized and Generally Accepted Good Engineering Practices requirements. BP’s documentation was reviewed and verified by OSHA and independent third-party experts.

“BP is committed to workplace safety. A strong relationship with OSHA is part of that commitment,” said Iain Conn, BP’s global head of Refining & Marketing. “We respect OSHA and have worked to address their concerns in this latest agreement. Our aim is to be a leader in process safety and we look forward to continuing our cooperation with OSHA to create an even safer workplace in BP and in our industry as a whole.”

Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis said the ultimate goal of the agreement is to protect workers.

“For the workers at BP’s Texas City refinery, this settlement will help establish a culture of safety. The workers who help keep our nation’s oil and gas industries running deserve to go to work each day without fear of losing their lives.”

 The agreement is available at: www.osha.gov/dep/bp/FINALEXECUTEDSettlement.pdf. For a timeline on OSHA’s actions regarding BP, visit www.osha.gov/dep/bp/bp.html.



 

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to ISHN.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Scenes from the World of Safety

Sights, signs & symbols from the National Safety Congress & Expo held in San Diego, CA, September 15-18

11/4/14 2:00 pm EST

Eye Injuries: You rarely see them coming. Practical Solutions for reducing injuries to the eye.

The 3M Eye Injury Reduction webinar will provide an examination of how to help solve eye injuries in the workplace. This issue continues to challenge virtually every industry, and the solution is often times multifaceted. 3M will share some new tools and approaches to help you in solving this issue.

ISHN Magazine

ISHN JAN 2015 COVER

2015 January

Check out ISHN's first issue of 2015, which features articles about hearing protection as well as the State of the EHS Nation 2015 Survey.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

THE ISHN STORE

M:\General Shared\__AEC Store Katie Z\AEC Store\Images\ISHN\safetyfourth.jpg
Safety Engineering, 4th Edition

A practical, solutions-driven reference, Safety Engineering, 4th edition, has been completely revised and updated to reflect many of today’s issues in safety.

More Products

For Distributors Only - January 2015

FDO JAN 2015 COVER

 

For Distributors Only is ISHN's niche brand standard-sized magazine supplement aimed at an audience of 2,000 U.S. distributors that sell safety products. Circulation only goes to distributors. 

CHECK OUT THE JANUARY 2015 ISSUE OF FDO HERE

STAY CONNECTED

Facebook logo Twitter YouTubeLinkedIn Google + icon

ishn infographics

2012 US workplace deathsCheck out ISHN's new Infographic page! Learn more about worker safety through these interactive images. CLICK HERE to view the page.