Andhra Pradesh govt orders special drive for compliance of safety protocols in industries
The Andhra Pradesh government on Tuesday ordered a special drive for full-scale inspection of all industrial units in the state to ensure compliance of safety protocols, in the backdrop of a spate of accidents that claimed tens of lives in recent days, particularly in the port city of Visakhapatnam.
Amaravati: The Andhra Pradesh government on Tuesday ordered a special drive for full-scale inspection of all industrial units in the state to ensure compliance of safety protocols, in the backdrop of a spate of accidents that claimed tens of lives in recent days, particularly in the port city of Visakhapatnam.
A seven-member committee headed by Joint Collector (Welfare) has been constituted in each district to carry out the special drive within 90 days, a senior official said.
The panel would take up the work with the involvement of officials from Factories Department, AP Pollution Control Board, Boilers Department, State Disaster Response and Fire Services Department and Director of Electrical Safety and Chief Electrical Inspector (Energy Department).
A styrene vapour leak in LG Polymers unit at a village near Visakhapatnam in May had left 12 people dead and over 580 ill while a crane mishap at the Hindustan Shipyard Limited in the coastal city killed ten workers.
In the first phase, all hazardous chemical industries, covered under the Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical Rules, 1989, will be covered under the special drive, according to Special Chief Secretary (Industries and Infrastructure) R Karikal Valaven.
Industries that store, manufacture or handle explosive substances as defined under the Explosives Act and the Petroleum Act and all red category industrial units would also be covered in the first phase, he said.
In June, the Central Pollution Control Board directed all the state PCBs to ensure that risk studies were duly undertaken by all industries dealing with hazardous chemicals and that their onsite and offsite plans are operational.
Mock drills are also required to be carried out for testing the plans, in accordance with the National Green Tribunal order.
After the styrene vapour leak, the High Power Committee headed by Special Chief Secretary (Environment) Neerabh Kumar Prasad had recommended a series of steps to be taken by various departments for preventing such mishaps in future.
Based on these recommendations, we decided there is an immediate need to organise a special drive of inspections for ensuring compliance of all safety protocols and environment norms by all industrial units, the Special Chief Secretary (Industries) said.
Prior to the inspections, managements of the industrial units are required to prepare a report on safety protocols and environmental norms being followed as per the relevant Acts, rules and regulations.
Valaven directed the head of departments to ensure that the inspections begin immediately and the industrial units in high priority, based on safety risk assessment and pollution load, be asked to prepare the reports maximum within a fortnight.
The District Joint Committee would review the reports after the joint inspections and take necessary action under relevant provisions of law, he said.