The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Wynnewood Refining Company in Wynnewood, Okla., with three serious and two repeat violations of OSHA standards, and has proposed penalties totaling $91,000 for allegedly failing to protect employees from hazardous working conditions.
OSHA's Oklahoma City Area Office began its inspection on April 21 following an explosion resulting from the release of flammable liquid and vapor from an open piping system during preparation for maintenance. The facility, which produces gasoline, butane, fuel oils and asphalt, employs 210 people. The company is a subsidiary of Denver-based Gary-Williams Energy Corporation.
The three serious violations were for failing to document and implement provisions of OSHA's Process Safety Management (PSM) standard concerning equipment deficiencies, operator training and safe working practices. A serious violation is one in which there is a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result.
The two repeat violations were for failing to document design codes, written procedures for normal operations and written procedures for mechanical integrity. The refinery lacked these requirements of the PSM standard with regard to one of the refinery unit's flare systems. A repeat violation is one in which the same or similar standard was cited within the past three years prior to the current inspection.
Wynnewood Refining has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the Oklahoma City area director or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.