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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 774182 - Employee Killed When Toluene Vapors Are Ignited By Heater

Accident: 774182 -- Report ID: 0625400 -- Event Date: 12/03/1992
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
12342552212/07/19921752Myles Horak

At approximately 7:00 p.m. on December 3, 1992, Employee #1 and three coworkers were installing carpeting in a private residence. Employee #1 and one coworker were spreading contact adhesive containing toluene and trichloroethane on a stairway. The weather was cold and the heater was on. There was no ventilation in the room. Vapors from the contact adhesive ignited and the resulting fire trapped Employee #1 and a coworker in an adjacent room, from which they were prevented from escaping by steel burglar bars on the window. The coworker ran back through the flames, escaping with minor burns. Employee #1 died of smoke inhalation and second- and third-degree burns to his face, back, and arms. The other two coworker escaped unharmed.

Keywords: burn, obstructed egress, trichloroethane, ventilation, flammable vapors, work rules, fire, construction, toluene, smoke inhalation

Employee Details
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 123425522 Fatality Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported

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