Anderson began by telling the group of about a hundred users that building and nurturing a safety culture is a prerequisite for operating and maintaining a safe plant. Flanges, valves, fittings, and heat exchangers—especially in the fuel gas system, where temperatures may be 350F and pressures 700 psig.
Exhaust stack drains, which could release flue gas at up to about 300F during normal operation, higher temperatures during startup.
Water hammer, which can initiate pipe or structure movement, sudden noise, flying or falling debris, release of fluids, etc. Gas-path explosions caused by inadequate engine purge also is characterized by sudden noise.
Metal-clad switchgear failure is characterized by sudden noise, arc burn, flying molten metal, flying debris.
Unusual rigging and lifting during major outages demands that your staff and contractor personnel take exclusion barricades seriously. Repairing or replacing piping system components and welds opens a Pandora’s box of safety issues, including high elevation or difficult access, additional risk of fire, additional risk of trips and falls because of cables and hoses for burning, welding, heat treating, etc. The Prime Minister's recent assurance in Parliament that nuclear power plants are quite safe and there need be no concern carries no conviction, according to Prof. The Prime Minister dealt with the Union Government's concern and resolve about the safety of India's nuclear facilities in the wake of what had happened in Japan this year and made a categorical statement, but it raised more questions than answers in relation to the safety of India's nuclear facilities, the two said in a joint statement here on Friday.
They said that “nuclear technology is inherently risk-prone as evident from its track record over the past several decades. Chernobyl, they said, is a standing example of how a nuclear accident could result in large scale loss of life, radiation exposure causing carcinogenic and inter-generational disorders among the people living around the nuclear power plants and widespread damage to bio-resources in the area.
The proposed new nuclear power projects at Jaitapur in Maharashtra, Kovvada in Srikakulam district of AP, Bhavnagar in Gujarat and other locations will run on imported reactors yet to be fully tested for their design safety, the two said. In view of these dangers, they appealed to the Prime Minister and the Union Government to reconsider the issue and give up the proposal to establish new nuclear power plants. 2.Visually determine if the power outage is restricted to a small area, such as a room or floor, or to the building. 5.If the building is dark, remain in a safe location until emergency lighting is available to allow you to safely move in the area. 8.Buildings should be evacuated when no emergency lighting is available or for prolonged power outages. Steam can cause severe burns and displace oxygen and the moisture created by the steam can set off fire alarms. 2.Keep people out of the area and evacuate the area if necessary, especially if there is a chance of an explosion. MEMBERS OF LOCAL 85 (Toledo, Ohio) have successfully completed a maintenance outage for DTE Energy at its Monroe, Mich., power plant. Members made over 500 crane lifts to remove the old pendant tubes and install the new ones.
Local 85 BM-ST Fred Keith credits the tripartite pre-outage planning by Local 85, DTE, and URS for the success of the maintenance outage. Built in 1974, the Monroe plant is the sixth-largest, coal-fired power plant in the United States. This weeks safety moment for use in your next toolbox talk meeting highlights the potential dangers of working with mobile plant in proximity to overhead power lines.
This Safety Guide provides recommendations on how to meet the requirements for achieving and maintaining fire safety in the management and operation of a nuclear power plant throughout its lifetime, covering topics including fire prevention, control of combustible materials and ignition sources, manual fire fighting, training and quality assurance. But with upwards of half the user attendees first-timers, many of whom are new to the industry and may not be aware of how just how seriously plant managers view safe work practices, Chairman Bob Anderson worked a primer on the subject into the Maintenance Workshop conducted the day before the “main event” last February 28-29 at the Hilton Americas in Houston, Tex. He defined “safety culture” as a constant commitment to safety that permeates the entire organization.


Anderson said that based on his experience, the specifics of these procedures are best managed at the plant level, not by safety professionals at headquarters. Many technicians and operators come from other industries and are generally unfamiliar with powerplant operations, Anderson said.
They are the easiest hazards to avoid, through conscientious use of hard hats, eye and ear protection, respiratory gear, proper footwear, gloves, good housekeeping, good lighting, etc.
Moving into such areas as HRSG casings, steam drums, condenser steam side, etc, before they are properly vetted can lead to serious injury or death. The generating plants identified received Best Practices Awards within the last three years for sharing their ideas with the global community of gas-turbine users. Typically, the fluid release is sudden, violent, noisy, and accompanied by substantial movement of equipment and structural components.
Injuries also have occurred while the startled worker is franticly trying to escape the area.
He had a special respect for joints where dissimilar metals or P91 materials are welded, noting that both the P91 material and its welding are intolerant of any deviation from proper thermal treatment. Examples: Debris sent airborne by the sudden release of a fluid, the whipping action of an unsecured compressed-air hose, flashing of pressurized high-temperature water when the pressure boundary is compromised, etc. They may be sudden and unanticipated, as with the lifting of safety-relief valves; or planned, as with the opening of vents and drains. Or a plant operator manually opening vent valves may not know that a mechanic happens to be tackling an unrelated maintenance job, right near that vent’s discharge point.
Plant systems typically are lined-up in one of a handful of normal, well-understood configurations. Although intentional, the sudden actuation of valves, pumps, turbine shafts, and compressors can injure personnel near the equipment who are caught unaware. Other hazards include the release of exhaust gas, distortion of ductwork and structural members, expansion-joint and penetration-seal failures, flying debris. Personnel should minimize the time they spend near this equipment, Anderson warned, and never attempt to close the switchgear on a load using the local controls on the front of the breaker enclosure.
Equipment failure or inappropriate operation of these interconnections can quickly cause over-pressurization and catastrophic failure of the lower-pressure system.
Rigorous confined-space (gas side) air monitoring is important because an unknown tube leak could allow nitrogen to fill the lower gas-path spaces. With so much temporary piping, valves, heaters, and pumps, there’s a significant risk of hot chemical leaks or spills. High winds, rain or snow, ice, and extreme temperatures greatly increase the risks of slips and falls, risks from flying debris, risks of extreme worker fatigue, etc.
There is not a single country having nuclear facilities where accidents of one kind or the other have not taken place, either as result of mechanical failures, or on account of human errors, or due to natural calamities. The Three Mile Island accident in the USA and the more recent Fukushima disaster in Japan are the other examples of what damage nuclear accidents can result in.
Emergency lighting will provide sufficient lighting, but only for a period of about 30 minutes, to safely evacuate a building, but it may not be sufficient to continue normal operations.
They completed the job two weeks ahead of schedule, under budget, and with only one OSHA-recordable accident. It included replacement of over 2,000 feet of water walls, replacing the re-heat pendant and economizer pendant tubes, and additional work on the air heater duct work. To access the re-heat pendant tubes, members had to remove the roof tubes, and then weld them back in place once the new pendant tubes were installed (see photos). This is particularly challenging at thinly staffed combined-cycle plants, he added, where the onsite safety leader usually has multiple responsibilities.
Plus, with the typical combined-cycle complement numbering two dozen or fewer personnel, you don’t have the relevant expertise on staff to handle anything much beyond routine maintenance.


Unfortunately, Anderson noted, these are the hazards that also are the easiest to overlook because you walk by them daily and become complacent about the dangers they pose. If you see steam or condensate escaping from a pipe’s lagging, Anderson said, “Leave the area and report your finding to the control room immediately.” An immediate precautionary shutdown is in order. Many plants continue to suffer gasket failures, Anderson noted, and continue to experiment with different solutions. Either can pose a safety hazard because the actual point of fluid release typically is far from the actual valve or vent. This facilitates such plant operations as GT ignition and loading, steam system warm-up and loading, plant shutdown, and overnight layup. Components may actuate unintentionally as well because of equipment malfunction or operator error. During these times, the valve and equipment line-ups are generally unfamiliar to the plant staff, and also extremely complicated—creating conditions ripe for mishap—such as chemical releases, environmental spills, etc.
Examples here include auxiliary steam ties between units and ties among high-, intermediate-, and low-pressure boiler drains. Also, before you install exclusion barricades, make sure all workers inside the barricaded area are escorted outside the barricades. However low may be the probability of an accident of this kind, its occurrence cannot be ruled out and the consequences of such an accident can be disastrous.
By enacting the Civil Nuclear Liability law under pressure from the western countries, India has agreed to exempt the reactor suppliers from the bulk of the liability that may arise out of an accident. Sarma also objected to “the manner in which the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited is trying to push through its projects at Jaitapur, Bhavnagar and Kovvada.
All employees and contractors should be made aware of these areas so they can avoid them when possible and be mindful of a safe means of egress whenever they need to work there. As the plant O&M team gains experience, it naturally becomes competent and comfortable with the normal configurations and procedures. The Japanese Prime Minister openly admitted that safety of nuclear power is a myth as proved by the latest Fukushima disaster. In a way, this not only implies a huge hidden subsidy to the companies but it also gives them an indirect incentive to relax the safety norms to the detriment of public health and national economy,” they said.
It gives us the feeling that the affected families are kept in the dark about the potential dangers of nuclear power.
Local 85 members worked over 100,000 man-hours in two shifts to complete the maintenance outage. The publication is intended for plant managers, operators, safety assessors and regulators.
The manway door and the gasket, together, comprise an engineered system that must be properly designed, operated, and maintained according to the OEM’s specifications. The fact that the local communities living within the exclusion zone (1.5 km), sterilised zone (5 km) and emergency planning zone (16 km) around the project site have not been fully appraised of the risks to which they will be exposed shows that NPCIL is reluctant to take them into confidence.
The job peaked with over 300 Boilermakers on site, 200 of whom were either tube or plate welders. Recommendations are made concerning organization and responsibilities, periodic updating of the fire hazard analysis, modifications relating to fire safety, inspection, maintenance and testing of fire safety features, records and documentation, the adoption of a formal policy for fire safety, and specific responsibilities and authorities of staff in relation to fire safety.



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