SAFETY MOMENT : FOUR FATALITIES DURING HYDROGEN RELEASE INCIDENT AT AB SPECIALTY SILICONES MAY 2019

Created on December 28, 2022

On May 3, 2019, operators at the AB Specialty Silicones, LLC (AB Specialty) manufacturing facility in Waukegan, Illinois were performing a batch operation that involved manually adding and mixing chemicals in a tank inside the production building.

During the operation, an operator pumped an incorrect chemical into the tank, which was incompatible with another chemical that was added to the tank. This chemical reaction causes a process upset in which the tank contents foamed and overflowed from the tank’s top opening.

Hydrogen gas cloud was formed and released inside the facility, ignited, and causing a massive explosion and fire. The explosion fatally injured four employees and destroyed the facility’s production building.

Investigation shows several root causes of this incidents including the top five :
1. Improper Storage of Incompatible Materials
2. Lack of an effective hazard analysis program
3. Improper Ventilation System Design
4. Unavailability of Gas Detection and Alarm Systems
5. Improper Emergency Preparedness

This incident was very relevant for batch-type process reactors with possibility of reaction run-away with hazardous by products. Feel free to disseminate the Safety Moment PDF below for your team reference.

Source CSB Youtube channel :
https://lnkd.in/gsMWVF7n

#incident #explosion #fire #safety #hazard #chemical #k3

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