Alternatives to Hazardous Labor Conditions

08.01.2013

Presently the Autonomous Nonprofit Organization of the Tyumen Region “Life Safety R&D Institute” which operates its own accredited laboratory is carrying out the third stage of assessment of newly created workplaces at Antipinsky Oil Refinery CJSC, the first phase of which was commissioned in 2006. Based on its results fixed workplaces have been removed from rooms with noisy machinery, personal computer displays with electron-ray tubes have been substituted for LCD, and employees have been provided with personal protective means.

In addition to that air conditioning systems have been installed at workplaces, new buildings with rooms intended for those staffers who work in constrained conditions, as well as production automated control systems with remote control, have been commissioned for the purpose of reducing the time when workers stay in hazardous production environment.

For example, computerization of production processes at Antipinsky Oil Refinery CJSC has been implemented on the basis of the WinCC program of Siemens company which operates in combination with remote control mechanisms: electrically driven stop valves, control valves, start/stop relay of rotating equipment, as well as gas analyzers, temperature, pressure, level sensors. As a result, we have managed to set an efficient emergency protection system making it possible to conduct the process safely with the determination of the primary reason of the blocking of equipment response and the realization of the sequence of activation of executive mechanisms and actions of engineering personnel in emergency situations.

Industrial process computerization based on the Centum VP program of Yokogawa company has been put into operation as an alternative at the newly commissioned finished product sector.

The “1C: Enterprise 8” program making it possible to computerize accounting, personnel records, budgeting, contracts harmonization system, as well as operations of the refinery’s canteen, is being used for administrative management. Application of this program has simplified the reporting formation process and the work with those territorially remote administrative units of the refinery which locate in Moscow.

- The main difficulty in the course of conducting the assessment of individual workplaces emerged in the preparatory period, when the nature of engineering operations accomplished at workplaces for the purpose to reveal all factors of labor environment and workflow was studied, and the time period of their impact on workers was determined, says Aleksei Belokurov, Head of Industrial Security and Labor Protection Directorate at Antipinsky Oil Refinery CJSC. We have to closely cooperate with heads of structural units to exclude unregistered operations and positions, and all that under conditions of working time shortage.

Even in years past the lion’s share of work on the preparation and conducting of workplace assessment was put in charge of the specialists of the Industrial Security and Labor Protection Department, but in June, 2011 members of the enterprise’s commission completed their training regarding general issues of workplace assessment in respect of labor conditions, and due to this factor a new stage of assessment began with a competent coordination of their activities and under their careful systematic supervision.

- It is necessary to take comprehensive measures for analyzing labor environment from the viewpoint of hygiene, for injury prevention assessment, for providing employees with means of individual protection, for reducing the level of industrial injuries and occupational diseases among workers, for training and assessment of personnel on labor protection issues without leaving solutions of the problems of any of the above areas for the future, - Aleksei Belokurov underlined. - Surely, it requires paying the greater attention. Based on the revision of the staff list, introduction of new jobs and commissioning of new industrial facilities, we have, for example, to “quickly solve” the issue on analyzing labor conditions and injury prevention for the purposes of workplace assessment with regard to labor environment. At the end of each year we exert much effort to defend the amount of expenses for providing the refinery’s employees with protective clothes, safety shoes, and other means of individual protection within the limits of the next year budget. The fulfillment of all these works in compliance with requirements of Russian national and local regulatory acts leads in a natural way to reducing the level and prevention of industrial injuries and occupational diseases among the refinery’s workers. Annual statistical data submitted by our enterprise to Rosstat (Federal State Statistics Service) prove this fact.

According to Aleksei Belokurov in recent years the labor protection system in the Russian Federation has been rapidly developing, which fact is evidenced by the constant updating of legal and regulatory base and complexities related therewith: “State Labor Inspectorate for the Tyumen Region helps us to resolve disputable equivocal issues. We are especially grateful to the inspectorate’s specialists, because they don’t refuse to consult us over the telephone in addition to written replies to our queries. In fact, despite everything new, sometimes it is difficult without having any experience to understand “old” valid regulatory documents, as well. That is why a prompt reply of experts within extremely tight schedule of accident investigation helps us greatly.”

For instance, when an insignificant accident occurred at Antipinsky Oil Refinery on New Year holidays a representative of the State Labor Inspectorate gave comprehensive explanations with regard to the time periods and specific features of investigation connected with the road traffic accident, that was why investigation was conducted in full compliance with the regulations of the legislation.

“In order to enhance labor protection in the region and in the country in general it is necessary to meet requirements on providing safe conditions and labor protection as stipulated in the relevant sections of the Labor Code of the Russian Federation, simultaneously specifying the regulatory framework reducing thereby the number of applications for explanations filed with inspection authorities,” Head of Industrial Security and Labor Protection Directorate at Antipinsky Oil Refinery CJSC believes. “Take for example such problem as selection of efficient means of individual protection. It is no secret that some standards currently applicable in this area have already become obsolete and need upgrading with due consideration of modern requirements. It is enough to state the following fact: a significant number of suppliers are improving the quality of their products day by day, but until recently it was rather difficult to acquire individual protection means with improved characteristics, since they didn’t comply with valid regulatory acts. Now we can actually be guided by Technical Regulations “On Safety of Individual Protection Means” which have enabled us to remove a number of problems in the course of development, production, and use of individual protection means.”

Such leading international companies as VITOL, GLENCORE, MERCURIA, LITASCO are strategic partners of Antipinsky Oil Refinery CJSC.

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