- ISHN GLOBAL
- EHS RESEARCH
Wyoming’s most-fined refinery for safety violations is facing another round of penalties, this time stemming from a formal complaint and three August incidents at the facility, according to a report in the Casper Star-Tribune. The Wyoming Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed a $259,950 fine against the Sinclair Oil-owned Sinclair Wyoming Refinery. The fine would be the largest levied against a refinery in Wyoming in the past five years.
Wyoming oil refineries faced more citations for dangerous safety conditions per oil barrel of production capacity than those in any other state over the past five years, a Casper Star-Tribune analysis of federal data shows. Government safety inspectors tagged Wyoming refiners with 239 citations for serious, willful or repeat safety violations in 2008-2012, according to data from federal OSHA. That means Wyoming refiners were cited on an average of every eight days.
Last week Wyoming’s petroleum industry helped kill draft legislation that would give greater power to landowners to challenge Wyoming’s trade secret exemption in the disclosure of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
Wyoming Refining Co.’s oil refinery is situated literally on Main Street in Newcastle and a mere half-mile away from Newcastle High School. The school is equipped with a “panic button” that shuts off all ventilation in the building in the event of a toxic spill.
If there’s not an abrupt change of course in Wyoming’s rate of workplace fatalities, the Cowboy State is on track to lose 36 workers to on-the-job deaths this year. They will leave behind wives, husbands, daughters, sons, parents and friends — the type of tragedy that devastates families.
Just months prior to two flash fires at the Sinclair oil refinery (one on May 8 and another on May 25) injuring a total of six workers (at least three of them, regrettably, burned “severely”) Wyoming Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspectors had witnessed several other fires and fire hazards while performing a “process safety management audit,” according to the agency.
This standard establishes the elements and activities for pre-project and pre-task safety and health planning in construction.
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