SALT LAKE CITY -- The downstream industry has a
responsibility to better educate workers on the dangers
associated with hazards during maintenance turnaround work,
according to Cody Nath of Refined Technologies.
I feel the industry has done a good job, in general,
of educating contractors, operators and personnel on the
dangers of hydrogen sulfide (H2S), but not as much on other
hazards during process venting, said Nath.
Nath spoke in a Monday afternoon technical session at the
AFPM Q&A and Technology Forum on hydroprocessing
principles and practices.
In particular, hydrogen (H2) can be extremely dangerous
because it is extremely flammable, Mr. Nash said. Likewise,
nitrogen (N2) is a hazard because it is an asphyxiant without
odor or color.
Common plant sources for these hazards are bleeder drains as
well as manways or vents with inert purges.
On the other hand, there are several methods to mitigate the
potential danger, he explained. Those include the use of closed
venting systems as well as barricading, tagging and
communicating risk areas.
Operators also benefit from continuous oxygen (O2)
monitoring, including in the vicinity of inert confined spaces,
Mr. Nash said.
Finally, it is important to only use what you
need, he said. Often times, operators bring hazards into
play that may not even be necessary for the specific turnaround
A lot of us at this event have the ability to
influence those that may not know, said Mr. Nash.
We need to lead the way.
Nash made his comments as part of a panel discussion on time
savings for successful hydrocracker and ultra-low-sulfur-diesel
Hydrotreating is becoming very important as refineries
become more integrated, said fellow panelist Pui-Nang Lin,
process advisor for the Flint Hills Resources refinery in Corpus Christi,
Theres not a lot of room for storage and
blending. Everyone wants to know, How long do these
turnarounds have to be?
They can be shorter with proper safety