Sunday, January 5, 2014

Short Takes – 1-5-14

Starting off the new year I’m actually going to have to go back a couple of weeks for some interesting news stories that I’ve missed the chance to address in the blog. More on the latest crude train wreck, some stolen chemicals, OSHA preemption ruling, fallout from the West, TX explosion and a cybersecurity request for proposals.

North Dakota Train Wreck

There were some interesting news reports about the BNSF derailment, fires and explosions outside of Casselton, ND (here,  here and here) and a business look at the wreck. Another article addresses federal rail-safety activities. As a follow-up to the PHMSA Safety Advisory I reported on earlier, there is this article about some of the additional hazards that PHMSA is identifying in the Bakken crude.

Chemical Thefts

There was a brief news story about some rural chemical thefts from a Georgia agricultural supplier before Christmas. No word on what was taken (so it probably wasn’t ammonium nitrate fertilizer), but it does point out some of the security problems that ag suppliers may have.

West Fertilizer Follow-up

The Dallas Morning News continues its excellent coverage of the ammonium nitrate explosion at the West Fertilizer plant with two new articles here and here. If a Pulitzer were given for chemical safety coverage DMN would certainly be in the running.


The National Institute of Standards and Technology published a request for comments about a request for proposals (lots of requesting going on there) for support of the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE). It included a ‘partial draft’ of the RFP. This will be big money for someone.

OSHA Pre-emption Ruling

A brief article over at discussed a DC Circuit Court ruling about OSHA pre-emption of State chemical safety tort rules. The suit in question claimed that OSHA improperly recognized that OSHA Hazcom standard (29 CFR 1910.1200) does not pre-empt State tort laws from considering worker claims of inadequately identified hazards on chemical labels as a basis for recovering damages from employers for on-the-job injuries. The Court affirmed the language in 1910.1200(a)(2).

Retweets and Twitversations

For those that don’t follow me on TWITTER: (pjcoyle) here are some interesting re-tweens (RT) and twitter conversations (click on ‘@pjcoyle’ for these):

RT Regulatory fights loom large  - PJC - No mention of Chem Safety/security rules under EO 13650

RT @ControlGlobal ICS cyber security and plausible deniability: I believe way too many people and organizations particularly in ... 

RT @nerccip #ICS folks should review the … doc and … "Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks."

RT  ‏@redteamscada Another big year for #SCADA vulns with 170 posted to @OSVDB in 2013. … Will vendors step their game up in 2014?

@pjcoyle @PatrickCMiller My favorite rule (NOT): Do as I say, not as I do...

RT @chemsafetyboard NYT reports NYC high school lab methanol fire yesterday  similar to '06 fire in OH in CSB video 

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