Safety Tirelessly Focused on Safety

Tirelessly Focused on Safety

Safety drives reliable, consistent operations that result in lower emissions allowing us to protect the environment and our neighbors.

Working safe means Valero sustains itself long-term, continuing to provide community support, excellent employment opportunities, strong stakeholder value, and reliable and affordable transportation fuels that make modern life possible, in the safest way possible.

Beyond Compliance: Leading the Way for Voluntary Protection

"Going beyond" has been a consistent theme throughout Valero's history, and one of the best examples has been its participation in the Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) of the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and affiliated state safety agencies. Regarded as OSHA's highest-plant safety designation, Valero leads all companies with the most petroleum refineries approved as VPP Star Sites. Valero voluntarily submits to rigorous safety standards and audits and only facilities that have maintained industry-leading safety performance and have successfully passed the assessment process are approved as VPP Star Sites.

Record Setting Safety
At Valero, we take great pride in our safety record and continue to aim for exceptional performance.

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Valero refinery employee doing safety inspection

Our Employees Are Our
Greatest Asset

Our greatest asset continues to be our employees. In 2020, Valero's refining combined employee and contractor injury rate was its best ever with a Total Recordable Incidence Rate, or TRIR, of 0.23 incidents per 200,000 working hours, well below the industry average.

Stewardship, Safety
and Reliability

Through innovation, we are advancing environmental stewardship, process safety and reliability.

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Environmental Stewardship

Our team works to protect the natural environment by operating in a responsible manner, including using recycling and reusing practices, minimizing waster and investing in our assets. 

Meraux Refinery

Process Safety

Valero once again achieved high refinery utilization rates, resulting from another excellent performance in process safety and reliability, which are essential to curb environmental incidents and improve safety.

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Reliability

Our 97.2% mechanical availability in 2020 represents highly reliable refinery operations. Excellent performance in this metric reflects our ability to prevent unplanned downtime, minimize environmental events and successfully execute planned and unplanned refinery maintenance in a timely manner.

Emergency Preparedness
and Response

We prepare for physical risks to our facilities from natural disasters and other threats allowing us to protect our employees and assets, the communities around our facilities, and the environment.

Emergency Management Planning Our company-wide emergency management process is designed to assess potential risks posed to our people and operations and implement solutions.

  • Emergency response plans at each facility
  • Qualified response teams and relationships with outside response personnel
  • Regular drills and assessments
  • Critical capital resources
  • Use of emerging technologies
  • Emergency management process that complies with all laws and regulations
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STAR Metric

The STAR (Safety Tracking and Recognition) Metric is our newest safety program for ethanol plants. This program recognizes top performing ethanol plants in five key areas: 

  • Process Safety
  • Reliability
  • Environmental
  • Rail Safety
  • Policy and Procedure Compliance

Each quarter we recognize plants achieving zero incidents in all five areas. Plants that go four consecutive quarters without an incident earn a Super STAR award.

Goal Zero: Health & Safety Excellence

After a year of implementation, the “Goal Zero” program has improved performance through sharing of safety incident information and focusing on six data-driven areas, including:

  • Heavy Equipment/Vehicle Operations
  • Energy Isolation and Control
  • Contractor Safety Management
  • Hand Awareness and Safety
  • Slips, Trips and Falls
  • Dropped Objects

Goal Zero is supported by the use of assessments like the Valero Safety Assessment for Excellence (VSAFE), which looks at Management Commitment & Leadership, Employee Involvement, Contractor Safety Excellence, Occupational Safety and Health, Work Planning and Execution, Goal Zero Focus Areas, Emergency Preparedness and Training/Competency. 

The assessment closely examines design and effectiveness in each area to help us reach our goal of safety excellence and zero injuries.

Safety Data Sheets

Safety data sheets provide, in a standard format, product safe use and handling information regarding potential hazards, and how to respond to emergencies.