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An oil and gas waste company has been cited by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration after a worker suffered fatal exposure to hydrogen sulfide in September 2022 while working near a sump pit in El Paso, Texas.
OSHA on Wednesday said it cited Andrews, Texas-based Production Waste Solutions LLC for six serious violations after inspectors found that the company exposed its employees to serious chemical hazards.
The citations followed the death of the worker, who had been skimming and suctioning out sludge water and oil byproducts from a sump pit at the time he was exposed to the fatal level of hydrogen sulfide.
In addition to exposing employees to inhalation hazards, OSHA accused the company of failing to train workers on the hazards associated with hydrogen sulfide exposure, failing to provide a body drench or eye flush station in areas near corrosive materials, and failing to perform a hazard assessment to determine if personal protective equipment is needed, among other failures.
OSHA proposed penalties of $39,064. The company has 15 days to contest the citations.
Hydrogen sulfide can be found in oil and gas deposits, and its presence could endanger employees who are working in confined spaces without proper protection, according to OSHA.