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The Bhopal Gas Tragedy-Final2

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OUTLINEINTRODUCTIONHOW THE ACCIDENT HAPPENDEDFACTORS CONTRIBUTED TO THE ACCIDENTWHAT MAKE IT WORSELAW & ETHICSLESSON LEARNTINTRODUCTION2ABOUT UCILIndian subsidiary of Union Carbide Corporation (UCC)UCC an U. S Company established in 1886Gas and chemical companyIn 1994- UCC sold UCIL to Eveready Industries India Limited2001 sold to Dow Chemical Company

3HOW THE ACCIDENT HAPPENDEDIt was before Green Revolution where India was faced with periodic droughts which resulted in famine Through ongoing research, they found drought resistant varieties of wheat that had bigger inflorescence, were resistant to rain and wind. 1969 UCC (invited by Indian Government) opened pesticide plantThe varieties of wheat required higher fertilizer application and had higher pesticide requirement. Indian Government began approving pesticide factories all over India to meet the requirement4HOW THE ACCIDENT HAPPENDEDThe plant produced pesticide carbaryl (need MIC as intermediates)MIC is highly combustible and was kept under a blanket of nitrogen in two storage tanks in the plantThe accident caused 8,000 people died immediately; > to date, 20,000 people died, >150,000 are chronically illOn the night of December 2nd, 1984, due to malfunctioning of the valve, had caused water into the storage tanks, reacted with nitrogen and thus the blanket gone, MIC leaked out in early morning of 3rd December 1984The gas leaked over the city, carried by the wind. The wind carried the cloud to a vast area of almost 40 sq km.5CAUSE OF ACCIDENT

DURING ACCIDENT From BBC News:-"We were choking and our eyes were burning. We could barely see the road through the fog, and sirens were blaring. We didn't know which way to run. Everybody was very confused. Mothers didn't know their children had died, children didn't know their mothers had died and men didn't know their whole families had died. Ahmed Khan, Bhopal resident

8FACTORS CONTRIBUTED TO THE ACCIDENTGradual erosion of good and regular maintenance operations. Depletion of adequately trained professionals, especially in supervisory posts Declining inventories of vital spare parts Staff exodus and demoralization Under-manning of important workstations in the plant9

WHAT MAKE IT WORSE?Third World Country Prejudism;Indian caste system - majority of people belong to the group of lower castes and untouchables;The plant located among densely populated areas; The concurrent establishment of slum/colonies around the plant were never recognized by either UCIL or Indian Government;Lack of safety standard and maintenance procedures in Bhopal plant;

Policies - must be read and understood by both new and existing employees. They must also be accessible by all employees within the organization. This means that the language, content and format of policies need to be developed with respect for the diversity of the employee population. Policies must be approved by top management and documented. It is also imperative that written acknowledgement is received from all employees confirming that they have read and understood the policies of the organization. This should be done for new hires and each and every time there is a change to a policy as a result of HR audits, legislative changes or organization change, as this further strengthens the governance framework for human resources.

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WHAT MAKE IT WORSE?

Medical practitioners was unprepared for thousands of casualties and were not informed with proper treatment method for MIC gas inhalation;UCC expert denied that MIC gas was dangerous. They claim that the leaked gas would not have any long term health effects;Lack of community information and emergency procedures to deal with potential large scale disasters.LAW & ETHIC NO.LAWETHIC1.No violation of laws specifically e.g:Not providing information on chemicals used in a facility - claimed Trade Secrecy ProtectionThird country prejudism 1. well taken care facility in US but hazardous facility in India, 2. low settlement far beyond under US laws2.No tangible law or regulations for storing capacity of MIC in IndiaWorkers are expendables information on hazardous material not revealed3.Damage pay according to US law would bankrupt the company pay only USD470 Million; half is covered by insuranceSave cost on area they should spend more :1.Safety training cut to save cost2.Staff competency- high turnover3.facility and equipment safety alarm and fail safe devices not working4.Forging medical diagnosis with bias medical expert 5.No sense of responsibility in terms of finding the cure to neutralize the toxin of those infected, no law obligation.

LESSON LEARNT

Not following procedure is a common catalyst for man-made accidents and a reason for ineffective response to many natural and intentional disasters;Every decision made has their own consequences:The legal system does not always work to protect victims;The importance of having strict rules and enforcement;

The third pillar is to implement a regular review or an audit of both practice and policy. Periodic review of policy is built into the culture of the organization to ensure that both policy and practice continue to be aligned to the organization's vision, mission, goals and objectives. In addition to periodic audits, policies and practices need to be updated to reflect all changes to legislation as well as innovative human resources practice that will help to govern the organization to further serve the interest of all stakeholders.13