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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident Summary Nr: 202004925 - Employee Is Killed When Refrigeration System Explodes

Accident Summary Nr: 202004925 -- Report ID: 0317000 -- Event Date: 03/13/2007
Inspection NrDate OpenedSICNAICSEstablishment Name
31071521403/13/20077623811310Service Specialists, Inc.

Abstract: On March 13, 2007, Employee #1 was working for a firm that, as a subcontractor, performed maintenance on commercial food service equipment. He was in the kitchen area of a single-story restaurant, attempting to locate the source of a refrigerant leak in an ice cream storage dipping cabinet. Employee #1 connected a cylinder containing pressurized nitrogen to the dipping cabinet's refrigeration system via a hose without using a pressure reducing device, such as a pressure regulator or pressure relief valve. The cylinder's internal pressure of approximately 2,200 psig was considerably in excess of the dipping cabinet's maximum test pressure of approximately 150 psig. This disparity overpressurized the dipping cabinet's refrigeration system and caused it to explode. The upper part of the compressor broke off and struck Employee #1 in the head, killing him.

Keywords: head, maintenance, nitrogen, refrigerant, explosion, high pressure, struck by, refrigerator

Employee Details
Employee # Inspection Nr Age Sex Degree Nature of Injury Occupation
1 310715214 Fatality Cut/Laceration Specified mechanics and repairers

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