Chlorine Gas Safety: Preventing Chlorine Gas Leaks In The Pacific NorthwestNovember 15, 2018
Serving Your Community, Protecting Our EnvironmentJanuary 22, 2019
Interviewee: Paul Mariscal, City of Redlands
Water Production Operations Supervisor
Preventing Leaks in Redlands, California
Seventy miles to the east of downtown Los Angeles you’ll find the City of Redlands, California. This quiet community, with views of the San Bernardino Mountains, is home to roughly 73,000 people. They get their drinking water from two separate watersheds, one of which is handled by the Henry Tate Treatment Plant, which uses chlorine gas to disinfect and process an average of 8 million gallons of water daily.
The Tate facility, which was designed to handle up to 20 million gallons a day, uses two One-Ton ChlorTainer vessels to protect against a potential chlorine gas leak. Each vessel holds a container of chlorine gas, adding an extra layer of security in case the cylinder is compromised. The city installed the ChlorTainer vessels in 2004, and has not experienced a leak. Paul Mariscal, the city’s Water Production Operations Supervisor, describes ChlorTainer as “an impressive little system.”
Recently, his department hosted its five-year inspection with Cal/OSHA, otherwise known as the Division of Occupational Safety and Health, which sets and enforces regulations on workplace safety. Mariscal said some of the junior inspectors and engineers had not yet seen a ChlorTainer system in action, and he explained its operation as a fail-safe in case of a leak. “They were impressed by it.”
Well-Built and Easy to Maintain
“I don’t anticipate any major expenditures associated with it,” he said. “It’s pretty robust. If it lasted a hundred years, it wouldn’t shock me.”
Mariscal has found ChlorTainer to be very responsive to his department’s needs, including a visit to the staff during annual maintenance in 2016. But, he added, he rarely needs to talk to the company since the system runs so well.
The Tate plant is in a rural location, with residents nearby. It’s pretty quiet, other than occasional tours from high school and college students, who write papers on the plant’s operation.
Given the longevity and safety record of the ChlorTainer vessels, it’s likely those students’ children will someday visit the same plant and write about the same ChlorTainer system their parents learned about. And, given ChlorTainer’s 100-year life cycle, it’s likely their grandchildren will, too.