Hazard control in chemical and allied industries was discussed. Heavy penalties resulting from fines for violations of laws and large awards from litigation in civil suites have resulted in many chemical manufacturers reevaluating the risks posed by their facilities, operations, and the products they produce. Risk evaluation in the chemical industry was discussed. Performing a risk evaluation in the chemical industry required close investigation of factors such as factory site, structure, layout, materials, processes, unit operations, operator training, equipment, and the overall loss prevention program. Establishing a loss prevention program was discussed. To be successful, a loss prevention program needed a firm commitment from management. The author suggests that the activities of loss prevention departments be coordinated with other departments. All accidents, fires, explosions, chemical spills or releases, and cases of occupational illness should be investigated and evaluated. Standards for safety and health should be established for all processes, operations, and materials. Emergencies should be anticipated in order to minimize potential damage. It is noted that accident and health problems in the chemical industry differ from those of other industries where mechanical hazards are the main concern. In chemical industries, the major safety problem is associated with the ability of personnel to work safely with many types of corrosive, toxic, flammable, and unstable chemicals. Fires and explosions constitute the major risk in many chemical facilities. Recommendations for a loss prevention program were given.
Symposium on Control of Workplace Hazards in the Chemical Manufacturing Industry, March 11-12, 1981, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, NIOSH, Cincinnati, Ohio