Phillips 66 Journey to VPP STAR Excellence
Who: Rock Springs Terminal, Rock Springs, Wyoming
What: Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Voluntary Protection Program Star Level Designation
Background: The Phillips 66 Rock Springs Terminal has worked cooperatively with WYOSHA VPP Program for eight years. The site began its journey in 2015, when it earned the VPP Merit award and worked towards the VPP STAR. In 2020, this site was awarded the VPP STAR designation, exemplifying perseverance and commitment to continual improvement.
This site consists of a petroleum bulk station and terminal that both receives and distributes a variety of products, including ultra-low sulfur diesel fuels; premium, mid-grade and sub-grade gasolines and ethanol to wholesale distributors through pipeline, rail and truck transportation. The site employs three workers and a variety of contractors to meet this mission. Employees regularly test product quality and work with contract drivers while loading or unloading or making deliveries to distributors. Employees also perform maintenance to the pipelines, storage tanks and equipment while maintaining an industry-leading safe working environment. In this type of facility and process, a few of the potential hazards include exposure to benzene and hydrocarbons, flammable and combustible materials, and noise. There are multiple safety mechanisms engineered and installed to eliminate and reduce these hazards including vapor capture within the load arms, overflow prevention technology, flame detection sensors, emergency shutdown systems, fall protection on elevated areas and a driver shelter for drivers while loading which reduces exposures to noise, vapors and adverse weather. In addition, contract drivers are provided a specific detail-oriented three-day training program prior to being allowed to load or unload at the site.
Phillips 66 views safety as an all-encompassing endeavor, as such; any near miss or recordable incident that occurs on their site is tracked and resources provided to prevent reoccurrence. Phillips 66 also is strongly involved in the Rock Springs community, as shown through the numerous philanthropic contributions, participation in quarterly Local Emergency Planning Commission meetings for Sweetwater County and even responding to a vehicle accidents outside their facility and providing life-saving measures and support to those involved.
“Becoming a VPP STAR site, the highest accolade an employer can earn from OSHA is an amazing achievement. But harder still is maintaining the STAR recognition and continuing to strive for continual safety and health improvement. It is through the unwavering focus of Phillips 66 to incorporate not only safety and health for their direct employees, but also contractors working on the site, and their local community that this site exemplifies the attributes and commitment of VPP” said Wyoming OSHA Deputy Administrator Karen Bebensee.
OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Programs recognize and promote effective worksite-based safety and health management systems. In the VPP, management, labor, and OSHA establish cooperative relationships at workplaces that have implemented comprehensive safety and health management systems. Approval into VPP is OSHA’s official recognition of the outstanding efforts of employers and employees who have created exemplary worksite safety and health management systems.