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Fatal Fire Leads to OSHA Violations for Two Companies

June 14, 2019
Four employees suffered burns and needed hospitalization.

In December 2018, a fire at MarkWest natural gas processing plant killed one worker and left three other employees with severe burns that required hospitalization.

The companies responsible for the Houston, Pa.-plant's operations are now facing thousands of dollars in OSHA penalties.

“Providing workers with a safe and healthful workplace is required of every employer,” said Christopher Robinson, OSHA area director in Pittsburgh, Pa, in a statement. “This tragedy could have been prevented if the employer had followed safety processes to control the release of gases from highly hazardous chemicals.”

Energy Transportation LLC and MW Logistics Services LLC were cited for serious safety violations after agency inspectors investigated after the incident occurred.

OSHA cited Energy Transportation for violations of the process safety management (PSM) standard and for exposing employees to flammable vapor and liquid while they off-loaded waste material from a vessel into a mobile tank.

The agency cited MW Logistics Services LLC, the host employer that operates the natural gas processing plan, for violations of PSM standards, and for failing to inspect the facility’s energy control procedures at least annually.

Energy Transportation LLC faces penalties totaling $51,148.  MW Logistics Services LLC faces $47,360 in penalties.

Both companies have 15 business days to respond to the citations.

About the Author

EHS Today Staff

EHS Today's editorial staff includes:

Dave Blanchard, Editor-in-Chief: During his career Dave has led the editorial management of many of Endeavor Business Media's best-known brands, including IndustryWeekEHS Today, Material Handling & LogisticsLogistics Today, Supply Chain Technology News, and Business Finance. In addition, he serves as senior content director of the annual Safety Leadership Conference. With over 30 years of B2B media experience, Dave literally wrote the book on supply chain management, Supply Chain Management Best Practices (John Wiley & Sons, 2021), which has been translated into several languages and is currently in its third edition. He is a frequent speaker and moderator at major trade shows and conferences, and has won numerous awards for writing and editing. He is a voting member of the jury of the Logistics Hall of Fame, and is a graduate of Northern Illinois University.

Adrienne Selko, Senior Editor: In addition to her roles with EHS Today and the Safety Leadership Conference, Adrienne is also a senior editor at IndustryWeek and has written about many topics, with her current focus on workforce development strategies. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics. Previously she was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck?, which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list.

Nicole Stempak, Managing Editor:  Nicole Stempak is managing editor of EHS Today and conference content manager of the Safety Leadership Conference.

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