The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited CITGO Refining and Chemicals LP in Corpus Christi, Texas, for workplace safety violations resulting from a catastrophic release of hydrocarbon and hydrofluoric acid from the facility’s alkylation unit. Proposed penalties total $236,500.
OSHA alleges two willful, 15 serious and one repeat violation following an investigation that began July 20, 2009. The willful violations include failing to adequately repair and maintain process equipment, and to update changes in operating procedures.
Serious violations include failing to maintain floor holes to prevent employees from tripping, to properly label electrical equipment, to prevent exposure to electrical parts, to update piping and instrumentation diagrams, and to address process hazard analysis deficiencies.
The repeat violation addresses failing to train workers regarding modified procedures.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director in Corpus Christi, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.