OSHA cites Marathon Galveston Bay Refinery on training

HOUSTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration said on Tuesday it issued a citation earlier this month alleging Marathon Petroleum Corp’s Galveston Bay Refinery in Texas City, Texas, failed in 2016 to train workers in changes in the operation of a coking unit.

OSHA also alleges Marathon failed to document training of the workers, according to a second citation. Both citations were issued on Jan. 17.

“We plan to request an informal conference with the OSHA area director to discuss the citations,” Marathon spokesman Jamal Kheiry said in emailed statement on Tuesday.

Companies cited by OSHA can reduce the fines they face by eliminating the problems and discussion with the agency.

Both alleged violations are called serious by the federal workplace safety agency. OSHA has proposed a fine of $12,675 for failing to train about the changes. The alleged violation must be abated by March 6, according to the citation.

The agency has also proposed a fine of $7,243 for failing to document the training. That alleged violation must be abated by Feb. 3, according to the citation.

“I want to clarify that the citations were issued because the company violated OSHA standards,” U.S. Labor Department spokesman Juan Rodriguez said.

The citations stem for an overhaul of coking units at the refinery between July and September 2016. A contract worker was hospitalized after receiving an electrical shock on Aug. 8, 2016, while working on the coking complex.

Coking units boost the amount of refinable material taken from a barrel of oil and convert residual crude into petroleum coke, which can be used as a coal substitute.