Leader in Safety Training and Risk Management Shares Valuable Information and Safety Practices to Help Prevent Lethal Exposure to Hydrogen Sulfide That is Inherent to Regions
HOUSTON – February 26, 2020 – Veriforce, a leading provider of safety and compliance solutions, today announced a campaign to spread awareness and protect against the dangers of hydrogen sulfide (H2S), a highly toxic gas that can cause sudden fatalities when inhaled in high concentrations. The gas is emitted as a by-product of many industrial processes, including the drilling and production of crude oil and gas, making the Permian and Eagle Ford Regions of Texas especially vulnerable to exposure.
H2S recently claimed the lives of a 44-year-old man at an Ector County pump house and his 37-year-old wife who went to check on him. The tragedy has increased awareness for the need to draw public attention to the dangers of the deadly gas, cited as one of the leading causes of workplace inhalation deaths in the United States.
“As a trusted safety expert, we are committed to bringing workers home safely and protecting their families and the communities they serve,” said Colby Lane, CEO of Veriforce. “By arming the community with valuable information about the dangers of H2S and providing potentially life-saving training and information about how to spot and protect against it, we can help to prevent tragic incidents from occurring.”
Veriforce H2S Awareness Campaign
Veriforce will provide helpful printed and digital resources to energy industry workers, emergency responders, and private citizens living and working in the Permian and Eagle Ford Regions. The H2S awareness posters highlight where the gas may be present, signs and symptoms of exposure, and information on how to prevent exposure through proper training and the use of protective equipment.
Residents and local businesses can help spread awareness of H2S dangers by printing the H2S awareness poster found on the Veriforce website and displaying it on community bulletin boards and storefronts.
What to Know About H2S in the Permian Region
H2S can occur naturally or during processes inherent to many industries, including the oil and gas industry where it is a major hazard to workers. During drilling operations, H2S may be released at the shale shaker area, circulation fluid treatment areas, during tripping procedures, at the wellhead, cellar, and onto the drilling floor. Those who work in confined spaces where the chemical can build up to dangerous levels or in low-lying areas, like trenches, where pockets of H2S can form and little avenue for escape, are especially vulnerable.
People can only smell its “rotten egg” odor when lower concentrations of the gas exist. However, after continuous low-level exposure, or with higher concentrations, a person loses the ability to smell the gas. This can happen very quickly, and at high concentrations, the ability to smell the gas can be lost instantaneously making it fatal in as little as one breath.
If H2S is detected, risk can be reduced with the proper use of personal protective and respiratory equipment, moving upwind, alerting others, and calling for help.
Veriforce Offers Comprehensive, H2S Training: PEC H2S Clear
To protect those working in areas with potential H2S exposure, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) created a written policy addressing the safety training policies and procedures for those working in an H2S zone. The ANSI Z390.1 2017 Standard stipulates that H2S training shall be at least three hours in length, taught in a classroom setting by a live instructor, and students must pass a proctored exam. This ANSI standard has been adopted and referenced by the Railroad Commission of Texas, OSHA and American Petroleum Institute (API).
Veriforce offers industry operators and contractors the most comprehensive safety training programs, including PEC H2S Clear, that meets the revised standards set forth in the ANSI/ASSE Z390.1—2017, as well as includes regulations and requirements set forth by OSHA, API, Bureau of Safety & Environmental (BSEE), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Railroad Commission of Texas, and various other regulatory agencies. PEC H2S Clear incorporates all of the benefits of a PEC Safety standardized training program and provides workers with crucial knowledge of the dangers of H2S and the precautions, tools, and controls necessary when working in potential H2S environments. For more information see Veriforce.