Safety Informaton Advisories
Issue: The complex manufacturing environment in which portland cement is made calls into need a set of unique guidelines that assist individuals in learning how to safely work and operate equipment. Safety Information Advisories (SIA) address jobs which are not frequently done, or which pose special hazards such as fire and explosion. The Occupational Health and Safety Committee (OHS Committee, the ‘Committee’) develops SIAs to minimize potential safety risks and hazards that employees may encounter in the portland cement manufacturing environment.
Background: Portland cement manufacturing is a unique manufacturing process. Kilns reach temperatures as high as 2700ºF to create the manufacturing environment necessary for portland cement. The plant environment is one that often includes a stone quarry nearby to supply the plant with basic raw materials. Quarries employ the use of a variety of heavy equipment to mine and process the stone. Cement plant processing utilizes technology such as computerized control systems, specialized analytical instrumentation, information resources, pollution control equipment, and energy-saving pyroprocessing and grinding processes. As a result, there are two distinct types of work environments wherein each presents unique safety and health challenges that require different approaches to prevent accidents.
PCA Perspective: Because cement manufacturing includes two distinct workplaces that present different types of safety challenges, the Committee has developed SIAs to address members’ needs in these areas. Until the Committee formulated best practices for material storage domes and preheater towers, there was no information about how to safety work in these areas. Similarly, the coal firing kiln burning system is a unique industrial process, and the OHS Committee developed guidelines about how to safely work and operate these types of systems. To date, the Committee has produced the following SIAs: Preheater Tower Safety; Contractor Safety; Railcar Loading, Unloading and Movement; Lockout/Tagout; Machine Guarding Guidelines; Coal Best Practices for Design; Coal Best Practices for Operation; Coal Audit for Direct Systems; Coal Audit for Indirect Non-inert Systems; Preventing Heat Stress and Burns; and Dome Storage Safety.