The main points for the amendments include the following. Operators are to have protection gear ready for personnel in the event of dangerous exposure. They must install safety and leakage treatment systems, comparable to those for chlorine, for the highly toxic gases hydrogen cyanide and fluorine. Installed detection and alarm response systems are required to have automatic record keeping, record concentration values, and undergo regular maintenance and tests in order to ensure the alert and response functions will work properly in the event of an incident. Regarding accuracy of operator information, operators are to conduct biannual reviews of response equipment, detection and warning systems and operation plans. The amendments expand regulations for external pipeline management and provide standards for flow pressure in order to have better control of pipeline leakages.
The main items amended are as follows:
Definitions and explanations are added for response and containment equipment, portable leakage detection systems, safety barriers and protection systems, external leakage treatment systems, backup power, and automatic recording.
1. Regulations are specified for the amount of equipment for personal safety and air-supplying respirators on operating sites.
2. Regulations are added regarding requirements for safety barriers and external leakage systems for toxic chemicals such as hydrogen cyanide and fluorine to reduce the risk of accidents.
3. Regulations are added on the flow of toxic chemical substances in external pipes and automatic emergency signals in the event of an irregularity.
4. Regulations are added stipulating that operators regularly inspect and update installation and operation plans for reporting systems, and response, detection and alarm equipment.
5. Specifications are added for the configuration and function of detection and alarm systems.
6. Regulations for mandatory tests and adjustments for response and alarm equipment are added.
7. There have been changes in the production, use, and storage of certain toxic chemicals that have followed technological advancements and developments in response and alarm equipment. As such, there is no need for central competent authorities to issue regulations for installing additional response and alarm equipment.
8. Those toxic chemicals include substances such as darocaine, aniline, chromium trioxide, phthalic anhydride, dimethyl sulfate, tributyltin oxide. Thus, previous regulations for additional equipment have been removed.
9. For toxic chemical operators working before the implementation of these amendments, such operators are to complete inspections of response, detection, and alarm equipment within six months of promulgation of the amendments. There will be no leeway regarding the time for inspections. Relevant provisions have been deleted.
The EPA emphasized that there is a one-year grace period from the promulgation date of the amendments, which will be implemented in March 2019. The EPA urges operators to take pre-emptive measures as they can reduce the losses incurred from accidents. Operators must follow the regulations and provide the settings for response equipment, detection and alert systems as well as operational plans to the local competent authorities for future reference.
- Environmental Protection Administration, R.O.C.(Taiwan)