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Contractors

Application
There are different categories of contract labor. This includes
those with specialized knowledge or skills who are hired to
operate the facility or perform a particular aspect of a job, those
who are hired for a short time period to perform turnaround
operations or maintenance, and those who provide incidental
service, such as janitorial, food, or laundry services. PSM provides
special provisions for contractors and all of their employees,
emphasizing the importance of protecting those employees who
may work for another employer. However, PSM standards need
not specifically apply to contractors providing incidental services
whose work does not influence process safety

Exemption
PSM does not apply to contractors providing minor services that
do not affect process safety, such as janitorial, food and drink,
laundry, delivery, or other supply services. It only applies to
contractors performing maintenance or repair, turnaround, major
renovation, or specialty work on or adjacent to a covered process

Employer Responsibilities
When selecting a contractor the employer operating the facility to
which PSM applies is required to obtain and evaluate information
regarding the prospective contract employer's safety
performance and programs. It is the operating employer's
responsibility to:
Inform the contract employers about potential fire, explosion,
or toxic release hazards related to the contractors work or
process.
Explain the provisions of the emergency action plan to the
contract employer.
Develop and implement safe work practices to control the
presence, entrance, and exit of contract employers and
contract employees in covered process areas.
Periodically evaluate the performance of contract employers
in fulfilling their obligations.
Maintain a contract employee injury and illness log related to
the contractor's work in the process areas.

Contract Employer Responsibilities


The contract employer must:
Assure that contract employees are trained in the work
practices necessary to perform their job safely.
Assure that contract employees are instructed in the known
potential fire, explosion, or toxic release hazards related to
their job and the process, and in the applicable provisions of
the emergency action plan.
Document that each contract employee has individually
received and understood the training required under the
standard by preparing a record that contains the identity of
the contract employee, the date of training, and the means
used to verify that the employee understood the training
Assure that each contract employee follows the safety rules
of the facility, including the safe work practices required in
the operating procedures section of the standard.
Advise the operating employer of any unique hazards
presented by or found during the contract employer's work.

Pre-Startup Safety Review


It is mandatory that a safety review take place before the
introduction of any highly hazardous chemical into the process.
The PSM requires the employer to perform a safety review for
new facilities and for modified facilities. Before the introduction of
a highly hazardous chemical to a process, the pre-startup safety
review must confirm the following:
Construction and equipment are in accordance with design
specifications.
Safety, operating, maintenance, and emergency procedures
are in place and are adequate.
A process hazard analysis has been performed for new
facilities and recommendations have been resolved or
implemented before startup, and modified facilities meet the
management of change requirements which are delineated in
this section following Hot Work Permits.
Training of each employee involved in operating a process
has been completed.

Mechanical Integrity
OSHA believes that the mechanical integrity of the critical
process equipment is assured through proper installation,
design, and operation. PSM mechanical integrity requirements
apply to the following equipment:
Pressure vessels and storage tanks
Piping systems (including piping components such as
valves)
Relief and vent systems and devices
Emergency shutdown systems
Controls (including monitoring devices and sensors, alarms,
and interlocks)
Pumps
To maintain the ongoing integrity of the process equipment, the
operating employer must establish and implement written
procedures. Employees responsible for maintaining the integrity
of process equipment should be trained in an overview of the

process and the procedures applicable to the employee's job


tasks
employees must be well aware of the hazards involved

Good Engineering Practices


Procedures that follow recognized and accepted good
engineering practices should be used for the inspection and
testing of process equipment. Inspections and tests must be
scheduled in accordance with the manufacturer's
recommendations, good engineering practices, and prior
operating experience. Each test and inspection must be
documented. The documentation should include:
The date on which the inspection or test was conducted
The inspector's or tester's name
The serial number or any other identifier of the equipment
on which the inspection or test was conducted
A description of the inspection or test
The results of the inspection or test

Equipment Deficiencies
Equipment deficiencies outside the acceptable limits defined by
the process safety information must be corrected before further

use. As long as the deficiencies are corrected in a safe and


timely manner, they may not necessarily need to be corrected
before further use so long as other sufficient, necessary safety
measures are in place.
When constructing new plants and equipment, the operating
employer must assure that the equipment as it is fabricated is
suitable for the desired process. Checks and inspections must
be performed to assure proper installation and consistency with
both design specifications and manufacturer's instructions
The suitability of maintenance material, spare parts, and the
equipment for which they will be used must be ensured by the
employer.

Hot Work Permit


Hot work permits are essential for hot work operations
conducted on or near a covered process. Before starting hot
work operations, the implementation of fire prevention and
protection requirements must be documented on the hot work
permit. The date(s) authorized for hot work and the object on
which the hot work is to be performed must also be included on
the permit and the permit must be kept on file until hot work is
completed
Case Study

An Explosion and Fire Erupted in the Storage Tanks


In a product refinery, newly hired and old workers were performing their
regular tasks. No warning signs or symbols were present on the highly
hazardous chemicals storage tanks. Two workers who recently had
joined the refinery were welding pipes near the storage tanks. An
explosion and fire erupted in storage tanks containing flammable
hydrocarbons and wastewater.
Three workers were killed on the spot and seven were wounded
seriously. Three workers died later as a result of their injuries

Reasons
Warning signs/labels were not present on the tanks' storage area.
Workers did not know that tanks contained hazardous materials.
Other workers did not tell them (the victims) not to weld in the
hazardous chemical storage area, which is severe negligence.
The workers were new and had not received any safety training or
education

Management of Change
There is nothing permanent except change; therefore, written
procedures to manage changes, except for "replacements in
kind" (e.g., replacement of defective equipment with same
exact type which does not affect the operation or safety of the
process) to process chemicals, equipment, and technology, or
any other changes that could affect a covered process, must be

established and implemented


These written procedures must assure that the following
considerations are addressed prior to any change:
The technical basis for the proposed change
Impact of the change on employee safety and health
Modifications to operating procedures
Necessary time period for the change
Authorization requirements for the proposed change
Those employees who are involved in an operating process, or
those whose tasks will be affected by a change in the process,
need to be informed and trained before implementing any
change in the process. In addition, process safety information
and operating procedures or practices must be updated in
accordance with the process change and OSHA requirements

Emergency Planning and Response


Emergency pre-planning and training are vital to avoid
catastrophes in a workplace; they enable employees to execute
proper actions in case of emergencies. An emergency action
plan must be developed and implemented in accordance with
the OSHA standards for the entire plant. Furthermore, the
emergency action plan must include the procedure of handling

small releases of hazardous chemicals

Incident Investigation
Incident investigation standards require the employer to
investigate as soon as possible (but no later than 48 hours
after) incidents that did result or could have resulted in
catastrophic releases of covered chemicals. The investigation
team must include at least one person who is knowledgeable in
the process (including a contract employee, if appropriate) to
investigate, analyze, and develop a written report on the
incident

An investigation report must include the following


points:
Date of incident
Date investigation began
Description of the incident
Factors that contributed to the incident
Recommendations resulting from the investigation
Employers must address and document their responses to
report findings and recommendations and review findings with
affected employees and contractor employees

Reports must be retained for five years

Compliance Audit
In order to assess whether process safety management
standards are adequate and being followed, employers must
certify at least every three years that they have carefully
applied all the applicable provisions of the PSM standards. The
compliance audit must be conducted by at least one person
with knowledge of the process and standards requirement.
Furthermore, it is auditor's responsibility to prepare a report
based on the findings, noting any deficiencies, and the
employer's responsibility to determine and document any
responses to the findings and to document any deficiencies that
have been rectified. Remember! The last two compliance audit
reports must be kept on record
Trade Secrets

It is important that employers provide all


information necessary for compliance to the
persons responsible for:
Compiling the process safety information
Developing the operating procedures
Developing the process hazard analysis
Performing incident investigations

Emergency planning and response


Compliance audits
Employers must provide all the information without regard to
possible trade secret status of such information. However, they
may require employees to sign confidentiality agreements to
protect those trade secrets

Summary
In order to assess whether process safety management
standards are adequate and being followed, employers must
certify at least every three years that they have carefully
applied all the applicable provisions of the PSM standards. The
compliance audit must be conducted by at least one person
with knowledge of the process and standards requirement.
Furthermore, it is the auditor's responsibility to prepare a report
based on the findings, noting any deficiencies, and the
employer's responsibility to determine and document any
responses to the findings and any deficiencies that have been
rectified. Bear in mind that PSM only applies to contractors
performing maintenance or repair, turnaround, major
renovation, or specialty work on or adjacent to a covered
process