In This Issue

OSHA to Train Additional 120 PSM Compliance Inspectors

OSHA expects to have 280 staff members trained to conduct process safety management inspections by August, Assistant Labor Secretary for OSHA Edwin L. Foulke Jr. announced. So far, the federal workplace safety agency has more than 160 employees who are qualified to conduct the inspections. Adding inspectors will ensure that every refinery will be inspected under OSHA’s new national emphasis program. His announcement came the same day that witnesses and members of the House Education and Labor Committee charged that OSHA failed to adequately inspect BP America Inc.’s Texas City, Tex., refinery for years prior to a Mar. 23, 2005, fire and explosion which killed 15 workers and injured 180 there.

The Chemical Safety Board’s final report on the Texas City fire and explosion called on OSHA to identify refineries and chemical plants at the greatest risk of a catastrophic accident and to conduct comprehensive inspections of those facilities. It also recommended that the US Department of Labor division hire or develop new, specialized inspectors and expand the PSM training curriculum at its national training institute.