Chemical and Industrial Disaster

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 Do’s and Don’ts pertaining to Chemical and industrial Hazard    
 
  Sources of Chemical Disasters
  Chemical accidents may originate in:
 
1 Manufacturing and formulation installations including during commissioning and process operations; maintenance and disposal.
2 Material handling and storage in manufacturing facilities, and isolated storages; warehouses and godowns including tank farms in ports and docks and fuel depots.
3 Transportation (road, rail, air, water, and pipelines).
  Initiators of Chemical Accidents
  A number of factors including human errors could spark off chemical accidents with the potential to become chemical disasters. These are:
 
1 Process and Safety System Failures:
 
Technical errors: design defects, fatigue, metal failure, corrosion etc.
Human errors: neglecting safety instructions, deviating from specified procedures etc.
Lack of information: absence of emergency warning procedures, nondisclosure of line of treatment etc.
Organisational errors: poor emergency planning and coordination, poor communication with public, noncompliance with mock drills/exercises etc., which are required for ensuring a state of quick response and preparedness.
 
2 Natural Calamities:
 
  The Gujarat state is highly prone to natural disasters, which can also trigger chemical disasters. The release of acrylonitrile at Kandla Port, during an earthquake in 2001, is one of the example.
 
3 Terrorist Attacks/Sabotage:
 
  Vulnerability to chemical disasters is further compounded by likely terrorist and warfare activities, which include sabotage and attack on HAZCHEM installations and transportation vehicles.
  Causative Factors Leading to Chemical Disasters
  Chemical disasters, in general, may result from:
 
1 Fire
2 Explosion
3 Toxic release
4 Poisoning
5 Combinations of the above
Gujarat, being a highly industrialized State is prone to chemical and industrial hazards which are well supported by the fact that 35% of the total Major Accident Hazard (MAH) units of the country are located mostly at Vapi, Hazira, Ankleshwar, Dahej ect.
A stretch of 400 kilometres from Ahmedabad to Vapi is known as the "Golden Corridor".
Almost the entire range of chemical process industry exists in Gujarat, including hydrocarbon processing/refining products, petrochemicals-polymers and man-made fibres, fertilizers, health care products, plant protection chemicals, dyes, pigments and intermediates, fine chemicals, surface coating products, salt and salt-based products, ceramics, glass, cement, vegetable oils, fats and detergents.
Currently, Gujarat has total 36,179 factories registered under the Factories Act. Out of these 25,206 are working as on January, 2011.
The State has a Chemical Port Terminal at Dahej. Kandla Port Trust imports and handles the major amount of petrochemical products in India. Additionally, two ports in the private sector located at Mundra and Pipavav, handle major petrochemical products.
Railways, state highways and national highways running through the State carry chemical cargo that originates in or transits through the State.
Gujarat also has 15 airports at Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Rajkot, Surat an other places which store aviation fuel and other hazardous chemicals and more with more being planned.
In addition to the manufacturing industries, there is a significant infrastructure handling chemicals such as pipelines, transportation (rail and road), and isolated storages. A cross-country 2300 Km Hazira-Bijapur-Jagdishpur (HBJ) gas pipeline originates from Hazira. A hydrocarbon supply pipeline runs from Kandla to Bhatinda (Punjab).
Vulnerability is sometimes compounded due to the location of Major Accident Hazard (MAH) industries closer to densely populated areas.
The Government of Gujarat has categorized districts on the basis of chemical and industrial category as presented in the table;
 
Chemical and Industrial Hazard
Sr.NoCategoryDistricts
1 AA Category (Highly Hazardous) Bharuch and Vadodara
2 A Category (Hazardous) Ahmedabad, Jamnagar, Kachchh, Rajkot, Surat, and Valsad,
3 B Category (Less Hazardous) Anand, Bhavnagar, Gandhinagar, Kheda, Mehsana, Panchmahals and Porbandar,
4 C Category (Much less Hazardous) Amreli, Banaskantha, Dahod: Dangs, Junagadh, Narmada, Navsari, Patan, Sabarkantha and Surendranagar.
Source: GSDMA (2001). State Level Response Plan for Chemical, industrial and Nuclear Hazards Gujarat. High Powered Committee (HPC) GoI.
 
  Important links for further information
   
  Director of Industrial Safety & Health (DISH)
  Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB)
  Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO)
  Gujarat Electricity Regulatory Commission (GERC)
  Labour & Employment Department, Gujarat
  Department of Chemicals & Petrochemicals
  Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation
GSDMA Leaflets In Gujarati

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