Health & Safety
STS member companies are committed to the health and safety of our workers and the communities in which we operate, dedicating thousands of hours each year to improving health and safety measures in our facilities through continuous training. We also invest millions of dollars annually to improve safety features and continuously strive to set new standards. Our companies operate under the guidelines of the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which keeps yearly totals of Total Recordable Incident Rates (TRIR) as a standard of measurement for safety. Our goal as an organization is to have an industry that continuously strives to have no accidents, injuries or harm to human health.
Many of our companies participate in the Louisiana Chemical Association’s SAFE (Serious About Fostering Excellence) Program. To learn more about how STS member companies are improving safety standards, please visit LCA’s SAFE Program.
Our members understand the importance of being prepared when storms develop in the Gulf of Mexico. Each company has its own procedures and protocols in place to secure its facilities before and during possible hurricanes or tropical storms. The emergency plans developed emphasize protecting the safety of employees and our surrounding communities. The companies work in close coordination with local, state and federal officials, and this coordination continues well after the storms have passed.
The chlorine industry also works closely with local, state and federal officials to maintain the safest standards possible in production of chemicals and materials manufactured at our facilities. The safety of employees and the communities we operate in is paramount. The end products created from chlorine chemistry are also afforded the same dedication to safety, adhering to product safety standards and guidelines. If a concern about a product or process is raised, we will address it immediately.
Drinking Water Quality
In September 1908, a forward-thinking physician and chemist at New Jersey’s Boonton Reservoir added chlorine to the Jersey City water supply to destroy waterborne germs. It was the first time chlorine chemistry would be used to disinfect the drinking water of an American city. By the 1920s, most U.S. city dwellers were drawing chlorinated water from their taps, and rates of waterborne diseases, such as typhoid fever and cholera, plummeted. More than 100 years after its first use, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls drinking water chlorination one of the most significant public health advances in U.S. history.
According to the American Water Works Association, most U.S. water treatment facilities use chlorine disinfectants to disinfect drinking water. Chlorine disinfectants remain in high demand not only because they destroy most waterborne germs like bacteria and viruses that can cause disease, but because they also provide residual protection from recontamination as water flows from the treatment plant to consumers’ taps. That is why the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires that all water systems that treat drinking water maintain a residual level of chlorine throughout their water distribution systems.
In addition, the use of PVC pipes as the delivery mechanism for the water resources has increased dramatically in recent decades because PVC does not corrode or break; it also helps protect treated water from recontamination. In addition, PVC pipe can be readily manufactured to various widths and lengths to accommodate the diverse needs of water treatment facilities.