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Safe Processes & Operations

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Dan Roczniak
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ACC member companies are committed to the health and safety of their workers and the communities in which they operate, as well as the safety of their products and processes.

Through Responsible Care®, ACC member companies report their progress on the following safety-related performance measures:

Worker Safety

Responsible Care companies have an employee safety record nearly five times better than the average of the U.S. manufacturing sector as a whole, and almost three times better than the business of chemistry overall.

From 2010 to 2020, Responsible Care companies have annually averaged less than one OSHA-recordable injury or illness per 100 employees. This recordable injury rate is better than the retail, agriculture, food store, and general merchandising business sectors.

Together, Responsible Care companies have reduced their recordable injury and illness incidence rates by 30 percent from 2010 to 2020, making significant progress toward the overall industry goal of no accidents, injuries or harm to human health.

Recordable Occupational Injury Rates in Various Sector

Recordable Injury & Illness Incidence Rates

Transportation Safety

According to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), close to one million shipments of hazardous materials occur daily in the United States. The safe distribution and handling of chemicals is an important performance indicator for Responsible Care companies, which track hazardous material distribution and report incidents to DOT.

From 2010 to 2019, the number of distribution incidents reported among member companies has declined by about 31 percent. In addition, ACC members track DOT 5800 incidents, which are hazardous material incidents that take place during transportation. These incidents are ranked by severity, with 1 being highest severity and 4 being lowest severity. For 2019, ACC members reported 715 DOT 5800 incidents, 90 percent of which were Severity Rating: 4 or Severity Rating: Negligible.

Reportable Distribution Incidents Data & Volume of Chemicals Shipped

DOT 5800 Incidents

Process Safety

A process safety incident is an unplanned event arising from the manufacturing process that results in a product release, fire, explosion, injury or community event. 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 to demonstrate their commitment to transparency and process safety performance.

ACC members use the American Petroleum Institute (API) Recommended Practice 754 methodology for reporting annual process safety incident information. Under this methodology, Tier 1 process safety incidents, which are defined as any unplanned or uncontrolled release of any material, are given a severity score ranging from 0 to 135, 0 being the lowest-severity incident and 135 being the maximum severity score.

In 2020, 86 percent of the Tier 1 process safety incidents reported by ACC members were categorized as "low severity," meaning that they received a severity score from 0 to 3.

Responsible Care companies demonstrate their commitment to safe operations by implementing the Process Safety Code, which includes a company commitment to set process safety expectations, define accountability for process safety performance and allocate appropriate resources to achieve performance expectations.

Total Process Safety Events

Tier 1 Events by Severity Weight Bucket (2020)

Product Safety

Responsible Care companies are committed to managing and communicating the impacts of chemical products on human health and the environment and promoting safe chemical management along the supply chain.

ACC and its members developed the Responsible Care Product Safety Code, which members are required to implement to drive continuous improvement in chemical product safety. The Product Safety Code includes a set of 11 Management Practices, through which chemical manufacturers can evaluate, validate and continuously improve their product safety performance, while also making information about chemical products available to the public.

Each ACC member must implement a risk process to prioritize the chemicals it manufactures and identify those needing further evaluation – using considerations such as use, exposure, toxicity, production volume and other relevant factors. They must also have a process in place for information sharing about product risks along the value chain.

ACC members report their data to ACC for aggregating and sharing on this website. Reporting due dates occur in February and May for the previous year’s data. The metrics data are subject to review, and information on this website may change if updated information becomes available.

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