Comments Sought Regarding Industrial Risk Plans
September 21, 2007
Public comments are being sought before a November 5 deadline regarding reports about 13 companies and government facilities in Contra Costa County that use certain regulated chemicals.
The nine companies and four cities are required under the California Accidental Release Prevention Program (CalARP) to submit risk management plans for public review. Contra Costa Health Services (CCHS), as the administering agency, is similarly required to do an inspection audit of each site. CCHS will host information booths to answer questions about the facilities and reports in Martinez, Crockett and Hercules in the coming weeks, including this Sunday in Martinez.
The companies and cities participating in this comment period include: BOC Gases, ConocoPhillips, and Veolia in West County; Air Products and Chemicals at Shell Refinery, Air Products and Chemicals at Tesoro Refinery, Concord Community Swimming Pool, Rhodia, San Ramon Olympic Pool, Shell Catalyst, and Shell Martinez Refinery in Central County; and Water Treatment Plants in Antioch and Pittsburg in East County.
Written comments on the documents should be postmarked no later than November 5 and either emailed to ARPTeam@hsd.cccounty.us or mailed to Contra Costa Health Services Hazardous Materials Programs, c/o Randy Sawyer, 4333 Pacheco Blvd., Martinez, CA, 94553.
The risk management plans submitted by each company details their site's potential hazards and existing prevention programs, an emergency response program and a system to manage that program, said Randy Sawyer, supervisor of accidental release prevention programs for CCHS.
"Prevention programs typically include a combination of operator training, maintenance, safe operating procedures, contractor safety guidelines, incident investigation and hazard analysis," said Sawyer. "Public comment is an essential part of the CalARP process." He says all written comments received by the deadline will receive written responses and be included in the final audit findings. "If people would like a public meeting in their area to discuss these documents, that's a possibility too."
Information booths about the process and the facilities will be at the Martinez Farmers Market on Sunday, September 23, Crockett Farmers Market on Sunday, October 7, and Rodeo/Hercules Fire Department Safety Day on Saturday, October 13.
Members of the public can review the four risk management plans and five preliminary audit findings completed so far by visiting specified public libraries or by appointment at CCHS Hazardous Materials Programs office, 4333 Pacheco Blvd. in Martinez. Appointments are available by calling 925-646-2286. More information about CalARP or other accidental release prevention programs in Contra Costa, is available by contacting Randy Sawyer at that number.
The risk plan for BOC Gases and preliminary audit findings for Veolia can be reviewed at the Richmond Public Library, 325 Civic Center Plaza. The preliminary audit findings and safety plan for ConocoPhillips can be reviewed at the Rodeo Library, 220 Pacific Ave. The risk plans and safety plans for all the Central County companies can all be reviewed at the main branch of the Martinez Public Library, 740 Court St. The Concord and San Ramon libraries have the documents on those city's swimming pools. The preliminary audit findings for the Antioch and Pittsburg water plants can be reviewed at those city's libraries, 80 Power Ave., Pittsburg, and 501 W. 18th St., Antioch.
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- Randy Sawyer