Processing Magazine

Ga. chemical manufacturer cited for safety violations following plant explosion

November 27, 2012

DALTON, Ga. — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited a Dalton, Ga., chemical manufacturer for safety violations related to a plant explosion in May that injured 47 people.

MFG Chemical Inc. was cited for 20 safety violations and is facing $77,000 in proposed penalties following an OSHA investigation of the incident.

RELATED: Chemical rupture sends 47 to hospital

The explosion, which occurred on May 21, was caused by a runaway reaction from an overheated reactor. During the production of coagulant 129, a compound used in water treatment, an increase in temperature caused the reactor to overpressurize, rupturing the dome cover and blowing a hole in the roof of the facility.

In response to the incident, OSHA conducted an inspection under the agency''s national emphasis program on process safety management for covered chemical facilities.

"This inspection has identified a wide range of safety hazards that need to be addressed in order to protect workers," said Andre Richards, director of OSHA''s Atlanta-West Area Office. "It is the employer''s responsibility to provide a safe and healthful workplace."

MFG Chemical manufactures a range of specialty chemicals for the water treatment, agriculture, pulp and paper industries.