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Industrial Hygiene Testing Services

Category Press Release
Publish Date 5/12/2023
Author Paul Cochrane
Title OSHA Proposes Costly Penalties Following Fatal Occupational Exposure to Hydrogen Sulfide
Introduction EMSL Analytical provides air testing services, gas monitoring instruments and personal protective equipment to protect workers from hazardous exposure risks and help companies comply with health and safety regulations.

Cinnaminson, New Jersey, May 12, 2023

Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that federal investigators found that an oil and gas company employee suffered fatal exposure to hydrogen sulfide while working near a sump pit in 2022.

OSHA has issued citations to the firm out of Texas for six serious safety and health violations after the agency reports it found the production waste facility exposed employees to serious chemical hazards. Included in the violations, the agency alleges the company exposed employees to inhalation hazards, did not train employees on hazards associated with hydrogen sulfide exposure, and did not perform a hazard assessment to determine if personal protective equipment (PPE) was needed. OSHA has assessed over $39,000 in proposed penalties.

Hydrogen sulfide is heavier than air, so it can travel along the ground and collect in low-lying, enclosed, poorly-ventilated areas. The gas occurs naturally in crude petroleum, natural gas and hot springs. It is also produced by the microbial breakdown of organic materials, including human and animal wastes. Industrial activities that can produce hydrogen sulfide include petroleum and natural gas drilling, refining, wastewater treatment, coke ovens, tanneries and some types of paper mill processing.

“Hydrogen sulfide is flammable and toxic, making it particularly hazardous in confined spaces,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Companies with workers in occupations where they could be exposed to hydrogen sulfide need to implement the appropriate procedures to identify hazards, provide effective monitoring and the appropriate PPE. EMSL Analytical provides these resources to protect workers and help keep companies in regulatory compliance with hydrogen sulfide and other laboratory testing services, air monitoring instruments and a wide range of PPE.”

Several years ago, EMSL sponsored an educational video about hydrogen sulfide and exposure risks that can still be seen at: https://youtu.be/oiVAOrvDKvQ 

To learn more about industrial hygiene and air quality testing services, monitoring instruments or personal protective equipment, please visit www.EMSL.com, call (800) 220-3675 or email info@EMSL.com

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories with locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP <797>, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOCs, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at www.EMSL.com for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

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