Saturday, 1 March 2014

Accidents in Steel Plants

The Minister of Steel, Shri Beni Prasad Verma
The Minister of Steel, Shri Beni Prasad Verma has said that the accidents at different public sector steel plants of the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) and Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited (RINL) have occurred due to reasons such as fall from height, gas poisoning, electrocution, burn injury, fire/explosion etc. 

There has been no loss of property on account of these accidents in steel plants of SAIL. 

In RINL, in one major accident on 13.06.2012, damage of property is about Rs.8.71 crores. A statement showing details of accidents which occurred in these plants during the last three years and the current year is annexed.

In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today Shri Verma said, Steel is a deregulated sector. There are a large number of steel factories/plants in the country. Therefore, in regard to the private steel sector, the requisite data/information is not maintained by the Ministry of Steel.

          He said, in case of contract labour, compensation/dependent benefit is paid under the Employee State Insurance Scheme (ESIS) by the ESI Corporation.  In case of fatal accidents of regular employees, the compensation is given as per the law/company policy. 

SAIL and RINL provide compensation to their employees in case of death/disablement due to accident arising out of and in course of employment as per The Employees’ Compensation Act, Employee Family Benefit Scheme and company policy. SAIL and RINL have paid approximately Rs.16,69,45,271/- as compensation to the injured persons and families of deceased from 2011 till date.

          The Minister said, the average annual expenditure on maintenance of different plants (including expenditure incurred on repairs, change in pipelines, electric repairs and mechanical maintenance) of SAIL and RINL during the years 2010-11 to 2012-13 was about Rs. 5738.33 crore and Rs.777.80 crore respectively. 

Measures taken by SAIL Plants/Units to avoid occurrence of accidents in identified areas of concern are as follows:-

(i)            Thrust on systematic approach for safety management (OHSAS-18001 implementation, internal and external safety audits etc.);
(ii)            Inclusion of safety in design in new projects for implementation;
(iii)            Adoption of latest state of art technologies to minimise human exposure to process hazards;
(iv)            Enforcing usage of job specific Personal Protective Equipments (PPEs) by all concerned, mandatory use of full body harness in place of safety belts;
(v)            Campaign and training on rail and road safety;
(vi)            Use of retardant dress while handling liquid metal;
(vii)            Provisions of automatic gas leak detection and alarm system in hazardous areas;
(viii)            Conducting periodic mock drills as per emergency plan;
(ix)            Strict adherence to Inter Plant Safety Standards procedures;
(x)            Enforcement of safety induction training; and
(xi)            Strict adherence to safety procedures, medical fitness and height pass.

As regards RINL, enquiry committees are set up to probe into the incident of each fatal accident, the cause of each accident is identified and necessary measures are taken as per details given below:-

 (i)            Comprehensive safety audit has been conducted by Regional Labor Institute, Chennai, DGFASLI (Directorate General, Factory Advice Service & Labour Institutes) in July 2012.
(ii)            Review of Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment Training programme has been conducted by Director Safety, Regional Labor Institute, Chennai, DGFASLI in October 2012.
(iii)            Mock-drills as per the emergency plan conducted periodically.
(iv)            Spreading safety awareness through training programs and workshops.
(v)            Automatic gas leak detection alarm in critical and gas prone areas provided.
(vi)            Enforcing usage of job specific personal protective equipment.
(vii)            Conducting special training programmes on Behavioral Based Safety and Legal awareness.
(viii)            Training programme conducted on ‘Prevention of Fire in Oxygen enriched systems’.

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