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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 99578.015 - Employee Sustains Burns In Acetylene Cylinder Fire

Accident: 99578.015 -- Report ID: 0524530 -- Event Date: 10/02/2017
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
1268524.01510/03/2017Gateway Cylinder Technologies, Llc

At 10:00 a.m. on October 2, 2017, an employee was working as the general manager of operations for a manufacturer of industrial gases. He was disconnecting purg e pig tail connectors from acetylene cylinders. The employee was working alone i n the firms Nitrogen Purge Building. The building was a wood structure with a t in roof and siding. The acetylene bottles had undergone a 48-hour purge cycle. T he employee had disconnected the last cylinder from the purge line pig tail conn ector. He discovered that the cylinder was still pressurized and that acetylene gas was escaping. He attempted to close the cylinder valve. The valve was stuck, so he turned to go get a wrench. At that time, the escaping acetylene gas ignit ed. The heat from the fire melted the fusible plug valves on adjacent cylinders. They too released gas, adding to the fire. Approximately 40 cylinders had fusib le links melted. Each had escaping gas that ignited and burned. The fusible plug valves performed as designed, though, and no cylinder explosions occurred. The building caught fire and burned. The employee was able to escape. He sustained s econd degree burns to his right arm, back and abdomen. He sustained a third degr ee burn on his left arm. He was hospitalized for two or more days.

Keywords: abdomen, acetylene, arm, back, burn, compressed gas, cylinder, equipment failure, flammable vapors, gas leak, heat, pressure release, valve

Employee Details
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature
1 1268524.015 58 M Hospitalized injury

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