US Chemical Safety Board

US Chemical Safety Board An independent federal agency investigating chemical accidents to protect workers, the public, and the environment.
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Operating as usual

10/26/2018
Emergency Response Safety Message

A CSB safety message highlighting emergency response efforts at Husky Energy's Superior Refinery during the April 26, 2018, explosion and subsequent asphalt fire. The CSB's investigation is ongoing and a final report including findings and recommendations will be released in 2019. For more information, please visit CSB.gov.

Check out the US Chemical Safety Board's new digest on one of its older investigation - a 1998 propane tank explosion - ...
10/23/2018

Check out the US Chemical Safety Board's new digest on one of its older investigation - a 1998 propane tank explosion - https://bit.ly/2AodgrD

Interim Executive Kristen Kulinowski speaks at Texas Tech University  Texas Tech University Texas Tech University - Whit...
10/04/2018

Interim Executive Kristen Kulinowski speaks at Texas Tech University Texas Tech University Texas Tech University - Whitacre College of Engineering Texas Tech Chemical Engineering

Interim Executive Kristen Kulinowski speaks at Texas Tech University Texas Tech University Texas Tech University - Whitacre College of Engineering Texas Tech Chemical Engineering

09/18/2018

Check out video excerpts from a previously released safety message focusing on "winterization"

Images from the Pryor Trust Gas Well Investigation
08/16/2018

Images from the Pryor Trust Gas Well Investigation

Images from the Pryor Trust Gas Well Investigation

07/27/2018

Learn more about working at the US Chemical Safety Board
https://www.csb.gov/assets/1/6/hiring_announcement.pdf

Today we released our final investigation report into the August 31, 2017, fire at the Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, ...
05/24/2018
CSB Releases Arkema Final Report - General News - News | CSB

Today we released our final investigation report into the August 31, 2017, fire at the Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, Texas, following Hurricane Harvey. Learn more here: https://www.csb.gov/csb-releases-arkema-final-report/

CSB Releases Arkema Final Report Tweet   Houston, TX, May 24, 2018: The U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) released its final investigation report into the August 31, 2017, fire at the Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, Texas. In the days leading up to the incident, an unprecedented amount of rain fell...

05/02/2018
The Chlorine Institute

It's May - which means pool season is just around the corner. If you are a homeowner with a pool, or a commercial pool manager, be sure to watch this short video from The Chlorine Institute on proper pool chemical handling.

Learn how to safely handle your pool chemicals this pool season by watching this short clip on proper chemical handling from The Pool Chemical Safety Video available on YouTube!

Husky Energy Oil Refinery Investigation UpdateWashington, DC, May 2, 2018 –  A four-person investigative team from the U...
05/02/2018
U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board | CSB

Husky Energy Oil Refinery Investigation Update

Washington, DC, May 2, 2018 – A four-person investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) is investigating the scene of the April 26, 2018, explosion at the Husky Energy oil refinery in Superior, Wisconsin. The refinery was shutting down in preparation for a five-week maintenance turnaround when the incident occurred. Several workers sought medical attention and thousands of residents near the refinery were asked to evacuate due to heavy smoke.

The investigative team arrived in Superior the evening of April 26. To-date they are conducting interviews and reviewing evidence, including incident photos and documents. The initial, onsite phase of the investigation is expected to take several weeks. During this stage, the investigative team will focus on the following tasks:

• Documenting and collecting physical evidence.
• Photographing the refinery and the incident scene.
• Interviewing Husky employees and contract employees involved in activities potentially pertaining to the incident.
• Obtaining documents related to the tasks being performed at the refinery around the time of the incident, including work plans, site safety plans, hazard analyses, and job safety analyses.
• Obtaining construction, maintenance, and inspection records of equipment suspected to be involved in the incident.
• Reviewing the effectiveness of emergency response to the incident including evacuation efforts.

Review of the preliminary investigation results will determine the need for additional materials testing or interviews with employees.

The CSB will continue to provide updates to the public as the investigation unfolds.

The CSB is an independent, non-regulatory federal agency charged with investigating serious chemical incidents. The agency's board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.

The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to facility management, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov.

The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the agency's board members are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. The CSB conducts root cause investigations of chemical accidents at fixed industr...

At Didion Milling, the CSB determined:1) Workers believed the conditions at the mill on the night of the incident were “...
04/30/2018

At Didion Milling, the CSB determined:

1) Workers believed the conditions at the mill on the night of the incident were “normal,” and up until just moments before the explosions, workers either were unaware of any problems or assumed their troubleshooting efforts would reveal a typical and manageable situation.
2) Prior to the explosion workers reported seeing and smelling smoke coming from the facility.
3) Several workers entered various mill buildings to locate the source of the smoke, but were unable to immediately find the cause.
4) Approximately 15 to 30 minutes before the explosions, workers focused their inspections on a piece of equipment called a gap mill. Workers then observed an air filter blow off of the gap mill’s air intake line, resulting in corn dust filling the air and a three- to four-foot flame shooting from the air intake line.
5) Around 11:00 PM, one or more explosions occurred. The explosions caused the complete collapse of four of the nine buildings that make up the Didion facility; the remaining five were severely damaged.
6) Five workers died as a result of the explosions and the collapse of the buildings. The other 14 workers sustained injuries that ranged from minor to life-threatening.

04/30/2018
www.csb.gov

Today is the last day of our April emphasis on combustible dust. Our 2006 Combustible Dust Study identified 281 incidents between 1980 and 2005 that killed 119 workers & injured 718. Since then we've conducted 5 dust investigations in which 27 workers were killed and 61 injured. These incidents can be prevented. Read our fact sheet on combustible dust safety here:https://www.csb.gov/assets/1/6/csb_2018_factsheet_combustibledust_05.pdf

Statement on Workers' Memorial Day from Chairperson Vanessa Allen SutherlandOn April 28, 2018, our nation will mark Work...
04/27/2018

Statement on Workers' Memorial Day from Chairperson Vanessa Allen Sutherland

On April 28, 2018, our nation will mark Workers' Memorial Day. This is the day we remember those working men and women who died on the job. On behalf of our entire CSB family, I join the families of our lost workers in remembering your loved ones and joining you in your efforts to honor your family members by striving to make our workplaces safer.

Throughout our twenty-year history of driving chemical safety change to protect people and the environment, we meet workers across many industries and hear about their efforts to promote safety in their workplaces. Many of them are directly affected by a tragic accident in their workplaces or communities. Other workers are implementing lessons learned from an accident so that they do not have to witness a similar tragedy in the future.

Throughout our investigations, we’ve seen a reoccurring theme that making workplaces safer is often the result of the positive impact of worker participation. As experts in the potential hazards of the work they perform, workers are a vital knowledge resource and have much to gain from a successful safety program and everything to lose if the program fails. Therefore, they are motivated to make the safety program successful.

Every effective worker participation program also has worker protections in place. Eight years ago, the U.S. experienced one of the worst offshore drilling disasters with a well blowout and explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. Eleven workers were killed and seventeen were seriously injured. There was extensive environmental damage to the Gulf Coast. It was one of the most extensive investigations in CSB’s 20-year history. One of the resulting recommendations from our investigation called on the Department of the Interior to implement worker participation/protection measures, such as the authority to stop work when hazardous conditions exist and whistleblower protection, in offshore drilling operations (CSB Recommendation No. 2010-10-I-OS-R15). Specifically, we urged that these safety activities include effective processes for workers to identify safety hazards without the risk of retaliatory actions. Workplaces – like an offshore drilling rig – should be free from fear and retaliation when workers raise safety concerns. Management and the workforce should encourage and engage in safety discussions in all work places.

It is unfortunate that eight years later, we have not seen any action to implement our recommendations. That’s why the CSB encouraged Congress to enact legislation to promote greater collaboration by the appropriate Federal regulatory agencies to address this significant safety gap. Strong worker participation and whistleblower protections, coupled with stop work authority and well-implemented safety management systems, are essential elements to promote safe workplaces and to keep the nation safe from chemical disasters.

Safety is a shared responsibility. Greater collaboration between workers, management, industry and government, can create safe and efficient workplaces. On this Workers’ Memorial Day, let’s take time to “Remember the dead [and] Fight for the living,” by acknowledging the workers who participate in initiatives to promote a safe work environment for themselves and for their communities.

Pool season is approaching! Learn how to safely store pool chemicals with this informative poster from The Chlorine Inst...
04/26/2018

Pool season is approaching! Learn how to safely store pool chemicals with this informative poster from The Chlorine Institute

Do you know how to safely store your pool chemicals? With the weather heating up and pool season just around the corner, it is important that pool owners, managers, and employees know how to properly store pool chemicals.

Follow this link to download a poster on Pool Chemical Safety: Storage: http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/pdf/swimming/resources/chemicalsafety/pool_chemical_storage.pdf

We are deploying a four-person investigative team to the Husky Energy oil refinery in Superior, Wisconsin, where reports...
04/26/2018
CSB Investigators Deploying to Incident at the Husky Energy Oil Refinery in Superior, Wisconsin - General News - News | CSB

We are deploying a four-person investigative team to the Husky Energy oil refinery in Superior, Wisconsin, where reports indicate an explosion injured multiple workers this morning. https://www.csb.gov/csb-investigators-deploying-to-incident-at-the-husky-energy-oil-refinery-in-superior-wisconsin/

CSB Investigators Deploying to Incident at the Husky Energy Oil Refinery in Superior, Wisconsin Tweet Washington, DC, April 26, 2018 – A four-person investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) is deploying to the scene of an incident that reportedly injured multiple workers t.....

Today we released our final investigation report into the February 8, 2017, explosion at the Packaging Corporation of Am...
04/24/2018
Chemical Safety Board Releases Final Investigation Report into February 8, 2017, explosion at the Packaging Corporation of America DeRidder Louisiana Pulp and Paper Mill - General News - News | CSB

Today we released our final investigation report into the February 8, 2017, explosion at the Packaging Corporation of America’s DeRidder, LA, pulp and paper mill that killed 3 contract workers and injured 7. Learn more here: https://www.csb.gov/chemical-safety-board-releases-final-investigation-report-into-february-8-2017-explosion-at-the-packaging-corporation-of-america-deridder-louisiana-pulp-and-paper-mill/

Chemical Safety Board Releases Final Investigation Report into February 8, 2017, explosion at the Packaging Corporation of America DeRidder Louisiana Pulp and Paper Mill Tweet Washington, D.C., April 24, 2018: Today the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) released its final investigation report into....

Statement from U.S. Chemical Safety Board Chairperson Vanessa Allen Sutherland on the Anniversary of the Macondo Tragedy...
04/20/2018

Statement from U.S. Chemical Safety Board Chairperson Vanessa Allen Sutherland on the Anniversary of the Macondo Tragedy

Washington, DC, April 20, 2018 – Today marks the eighth anniversary of the Macondo/Deepwater Horizon oil rig incident, one of the most devastating accidents in the offshore drilling industry. Eleven workers were killed in the resulting explosion and fire. As we remember this anniversary, on behalf of the entire CSB, I extend our condolences to the families and colleagues of those lost.

The CSB conducted one of its most extensive investigations which resulted in a four-volume investigation report. The CSB examined a number of critical offshore oil and gas process safety issues that continue to be a risk in offshore drilling eight years later. Our investigation identified failures of the blowout preventer (BOP), a safety-critical piece of equipment. Without corrective action, these BOPs continue to be used today in both onshore and offshore drilling activities.

There remain significant deficiencies in human and organization performance that must be addressed to prevent future accidents. Our investigation called for the revision of industry standards to incorporate process safety management concepts and major accident prevention management systems. Offshore drilling activities are highly complex and occur in challenging conditions. Without proper risk management, hazard analyses and worker protections, the vaguely defined safety roles for both parties can lead to increased vulnerabilities to the operation. As we found in our investigation, absent these important safeguards, the consequences can be catastrophic for workers, their families, and the environment.

Eight years later, a number of our recommendations to Federal agencies remain unimplemented. The workers lost and their families deserve better.

04/18/2018
The Chlorine Institute

Just in time for summer, check out this Pool Chemical Safety Video from The Chlorine Institute. An important reminder to use pool chemicals safely and be aware of the hazards of these common products.

With summer just around the corner, The Chlorine Institute wants to remind everyone how important it is to know the basics of pool chemical safety before handling these products. Both homeowners and commercial pool managers and employees should be aware of the hazards. Here is a clip of The Pool Chemical Safety Video available on YouTube! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wINdg3OIJis)

Click here to watch the full-length video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yN68d9XvUdo

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Third confirmed death in Texas well blowout
Tpc chemical plant in Texas. Do we have representation there already?
The nation is indebted to you, CSB. Thank you for your hard work in emphasizing safe practices in places where hazardous materials are present. Because of you, hopefully someday, this world will be a safer place to work.
Have you seen this? Is the chemical plant going to blow up? #WeAreKoch
Hand Safety at
Las recomendaciones de los accidentes investigados que han ocurridos en las plantas de proceso de los Estados Unidos.
Dear US Chemical Safety Board, we just published this article about unsafe work conditions with a quote of yours in it. Will you share it with your followers? http://bit.ly/2Pbz8MM
Where can I find a chart or resource to store chemicals? I work in a lab and we are needing to get new flammable cabinets. Mostly we work with Xylenes, Methanol 95 and 100%, and the stains used in histology such as Eosin, Methylene Blue, Ammonium hydroxide, Isoprophyl alcohol. I know that there are chemicals that cannot cohabitate in the same flammable cabinet. We will be buying 2 cabinets. What kind of resource would you suggest I consult to correctly store the chemicals?
Easy: JSA/ RA: Driving Safety in the Rain What should you do while driving in the rain?