ACC member companies are committed to the safety of their workers, the safety of their products and processes, and the health and safety of the communities in which they operate.
Through Responsible Care®, ACC member companies report on their process in meeting the following safety-related performance measures:
Worker safety is a top priority in the chemical industry. Responsible Care companies have an employee safety record five times safer than the average of the U.S. manufacturing sector as a whole, and two times better than the business of chemistry overall.
The U.S. chemical industry invests more than $16 billion annually in environmental, health, safety and security programs.
From 2009 through 2012, Responsible Care companies averaged less than one OSHA recordable injury or illness per 100 employees. This record-low total recordable injury rate is lower than the retail, agriculture, food store, and general merchandising business sectors.
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Between 2011 and 2012, the Responsible Care employee recordable safety rate improved by 12 percent.
Together, Responsible Care companies have reduced their recordable injury and illness incidence rates by 79 percent since 1990, making significant progress toward the goal of no accidents, injuries or harm to human health.
There are close to one million shipments of hazardous materials occurring daily in the United States, according to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). The safe distribution and handling of chemicals is an important indicator of performance, so Responsible Care companies track hazardous material distribution incidents reported to DOT.
In 2011, the most recent year for which data are available, Responsible Care companies reported less than 900 distribution incidences, the vast majority of which were minor in nature, meaning that no injuries occurred and minimal product and property damages were incurred as a result of the incident. Since 1995, the number of distribution incidents among member companies has declined by 58 percent.
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A process safety incident as defined by the Center for Chemical Process Safety is an unplanned event arising from the manufacturing process that results in a product spill, fire, explosion, or injury. By managing, tracking and reporting process safety incidents, Responsible Care companies can benchmark their performance and set goals for improvement. Responsible Care companies publicly report process safety incidents on an annual basis, surpassing government requirements.
Responsible Care companies are working to make the industry even safer for our employees and communities. ACC member companies operate about 2,000 facilities nationwide and reported 225 process safety incidents in 2012. More than half of ACC members had no process safety incidents in 2012. In addition, of the reported 225 incidences in 2012, only three percent of incidents warranted a Severity Level of 1, according to ACC’s Severity Rating Index.
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Responsible Care companies are committed to managing and communicating the impacts of chemical products on human health and the environment. Product safety has long been part of the Responsible Care initiative, and Responsible Care companies work to increase public awareness and confidence that chemicals in commerce are safely managed.
That’s why ACC and its members developed the Responsible Care Product Safety Code to drive continuous improvement in chemical product safety as part of the industry’s signature environmental, health, safety and security management system. The Product Safety Code includes a set of 11 Management Practices, through which chemical manufacturers can evaluate, demonstrate and continuously improve their product safety performance, while also making information about chemical products available to the public.
Additionally, each ACC member prioritizes its chemicals according to risks, specifically designating high-priority chemicals, using considerations such as uses, exposures, toxicity, production volumes and other relevant factors and makes this information available to the public. For information about the products ACC members manufacture, view the Product Safety Summary Search Portal.
Globally, chemical companies also provide product safety information publicly through an international Chemicals Portal developed by the International Council of Chemical Associations. To date more than 1,800 chemical safety summaries are available, and the number of substances included in this Portal is increasing daily.
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