CHANNELVIEW – The CAPLE (Community Advisory Panel to Lyondell and Equistar) group held their monthly meeting last week, at the offices of LyondellBasell. They heard from Matt Smith and Phillip Reid about a national award, the 2018 Distinguished Safety Award from the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers organization, that LyondellBasell had received for safe operation of their plant, with no injuries.
Then David Wade of the Harris County Office of Emergency Management explained how his office interacts with a plant that has an incident. HCOEM maintains personnel 24 hours to respond to any type of emergency. When an incident requires response from the plant or outside fire departments, Wade goes to the plant EOC (Emergency Operations Center) to coordinate plant and outside resources.
David Gray reviewed the resources and procedures that the LyondellBasell Channelview plant has in place to deal with incidents. First, the group viewed the EOC, and had its operation explained. Then Gray said they maintain their own fire department, which the group toured at the end of the meeting. An impressive array of fire fighting equipment was on display, including pumpers, aerial ladder truck, hose truck, breathing air, a command center, and several ambulances. In addition to their own equipment, the plant can rely on help from the local fire departments, other LyondellBasell plants, and CIMA (Channel Industries Mutual Aid). The LyondellBasell response team maintains 26 trained personnel on-site that can fight fires or respond to other emergencies. In addition, CIMA has the resources of 110 area companies with their equipment and personnel.
Notification systems were then explained by Wade, and CAPLE facilitator Anne Gowan. In the case of an emergency, Wade said the plant will use the ENotify system to inform the public, their team, plant managers, and first responders of the problem and the scope.
Other systems that are used to notify the public include a Reverse 9-1-1 which calls phones within a service area around the plant, and mobile phones if a person signs up for this service.
Anne Gowan explained how to sign up for Emergency Notifications. She said to make a list of cities and counties where you live or work. Look at the websites of these, and sign up for whatever warning system they have.
Links to emergency notification systems for the 5- county Houston area can be found at: http://readyhouston.wpengine.com/partners/offices-of-emergency-management/.
Also, follow city and county social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
Sign-up for the following in Harris County and the Houston area:
— Ready Harris: http://readyharris.org/sign-up
— Greater Harris County 911: http://www.911.org/Free_signups.asp
— Houston: http://www.houstonemergency.org/
— Galena Park: Text Swift911 to 99358
You can also Download emergency notification apps, including:
— Swift911 Public (several cities use this app and you can sign up for all nearby alerts)
— CAER Online.
CAER is an information line, managed by the East Harris County Manufacturers Association, and tells about operational updates and events. This might include flaring, incidents, noise, odors, pipelines, smoke, fires, and more.