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July 14: US – MSDS Availability: Refinery worker sues over chemical burns

A follow-up to yesterday’s piece on the need to ensure MSDSs are made available to employees.  This story from the Southeast Texas Record:

A Beaumont man has filed suit against ExxonMobil, alleging its employee did not adequately warn him of a dangerous chemical inside a pipe that caused significant burns to his arm.

Charles Wilson claims he worked for Miller Environmental Services and, as part of his job duties, was required to clean out a drain line. Before he could begin working on the line, however, Wilson had to obtain a safe work permit, according to the complaint filed June 7 in Jefferson County District Court.

On April 27, 2009, while working at an ExxonMobil plant, Wilson obtained the required safe work permit, which the ExxonMobil operator filled out to indicate there were no chemical hazards present in the drain line, the suit states.

“The operator did note ‘possible caustic residue,'” the complaint says. “However, the operator did not review this ‘possible’ chemical hazard with Plaintiff. Had he done so, he would have provided the MSDS, talked about exposure potential, discussed required personal protective equipment and generally given Plaintiff an adequate warning as to what Plaintiff might be exposed to. He did not do so.”

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Relevant Nexreg Compliance Links: CPSC compliance, OSHA MSDS authoring, MSDS authoring

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