How much could a refrigerant leak cost you?

No matter which industry you are working in, health and safety procedures should of course be the prime operating focus, ensuring that all work is carried out safely and efficiently. This is especially true when potentially dangerous gases are involved, such as in the refrigeration and HVAC industry.

One major problem with refrigeration in particular is many engineers still use older, analogue devices which often provide inaccurate or obscure readings. This then means either the end result will prove incorrect or the technician might feel they have to try and work out the results themselves. Inevitably this leads to mistakes, which when you’re working with gases can become costly or perhaps even deadly.


US fine reaches millions of dollars

There are multiple costs associated with making mistakes in the refrigeration and HVAC industry. Not only is there the risk of fines, but as mentioned above people can also become sick – or worse – when refrigeration gauges aren’t used effectively.

Both issues were highlighted in a US case a few years ago, with a mammoth fine handed out to a corporation responsible for an airborne ammonia leak that occurred while the company responded to BP’s much documented oil spill in 2010.

According to a joint media release from the US Environment Protection Agency and the US Department of Justice, the leak caused 152 people to become sick, four of whom were admitted to intensive care. These people were responding to the oil spill incident when they were exposed to the gas.

Cases like this outline just how important regular checks are

The ammonia leak occurred due to a major refrigeration equipment malfunction which released around 32,000 pounds of ammonia into the air. While this example is an extreme case of refrigeration equipment failure, it certainly highlights the value of regular maintenance checks.

As a result of the leak’s scale and its preventable nature, the company was reported to have been fined a total of 3 million dollars.


How can you ensure this doesn’t happen to you?

Whether you’re working on a scale as large as the above example or simply performing routine checks on your building’s HVAC system, you need to ensure you have up-to-date instruments that capitalise on the latest technology to provide safe and effective measuring standards.

Testo’s recently released range of ‘Smart’ Manifolds offer the latest and most precise refrigeration technology. The new testo 557 is the flagship for our range of digital manifolds. It comes complete with 60 built-in refrigerants, removing calibration time and allowing you to measure a diverse range of gases straight out of the box.


With testo’s new Smart technology HVAC measurements are more effecient than ever


It also communicates with your smartphone using the testo refrigeration app, so you can monitor results whichever way suits you best.

For more information on testo’s solutions for the Refrigeration industry or any of our products why not visit our website or give us a call on 01420 544433

About Testo Limited

We offer an extensive range of instruments for many parameters and applications including; Temperature, Humidity, Velocity, Gas analysis, RPM, Pressure, Light, pH, Sound. testo instruments are widely used in the following sectors: HVAC-R: heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration. Process Industry: manufacturing industries, service companies and utilities. Food Sector: including food manufacture, transport, storage, distribution and retail. Thermal Imaging: for building surveys, maintenance, electrical inspections and production monitoring.

Posted on July 18, 2016, in Environmental, Facilities Maintenance, Facilities management, FM, Health and Safety, hvac, Industry, Latest News, News, Online, Refrigeration, Safety, Today's Testo and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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