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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Inspection Detail

Inspection: 309843001 - Packaging Corp Of America

Inspection Information - Office: Appleton


Inspection Nr: 309843001
Report ID: 0521100
Date Opened: 07/29/2008

Site Address:
Packaging Corp Of America
N9090 Cty Rd E
Tomahawk, WI 54487

Mailing Address:
, , 00000

Union Status: Union


NAICS: 322121/Paper (except Newsprint) Mills

Inspection Type: Accident

Scope: Partial

Advanced Notice: N

Ownership: Private

Safety/Health: Safety

Close Conference: 11/18/2008


Case Closed: 05/05/2009

Related Activity
Type Activity Nr Safety Health
Accident 100651157
Violation Summary
Violations/Penalties Serious Willful Repeat Other Unclass Total
Initial Violations 4 2 6
Current Violations 4 2 6
Initial Penalty $22,500 $0 $0 $0 $0 $22,500
Current Penalty $22,500 $0 $0 $0 $0 $22,500
FTA Penalty $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0

Violation Items
# Citation ID Citaton Type Standard Cited Issuance Date Abatement Due Date Current Penalty Initial Penalty FTA Penalty Contest Latest Event Note
1. 01001 Serious 19100252 A02 IIIB 01/21/2009 02/08/2009 $1,500 $1,500 $0 -  
2. 01002 Serious 19100252 A02 VIC 01/21/2009 02/23/2009 $7,000 $7,000 $0 -  
3. 01003 Serious 19100252 A02 XIVB 01/21/2009 02/23/2009 $7,000 $7,000 $0 -  
4. 01004 Serious 19100252 A03 II 01/21/2009 02/23/2009 $7,000 $7,000 $0 -  
5. 02001 Other 19100252 A02 XIIIC 01/21/2009 02/23/2009 $0 $0 $0 -  
6. 02002 Other 19101026 L02 I 01/21/2009 02/23/2009 $0 $0 $0 -  

Investigation Summary

Investigation Nr: 200651487
Event: 07/29/2008
Three Employees Are Killed When Tank Explodes During Welding

On July 29, 2008, Employee #1, manager, Employee #2, marketing estimator, and Employee #3, welder, were on top of an 80 ft high by 40 ft diameter outdoor tank. The tank primarily contained 88 percent reused mill water, white water, and 12 percent recycled corrugated material that had been mechanically reduced to fiber. It was believed hydrogen and methane gas were generated by anaerobic bacteria subsisting on the starches released into the recycled mill water while the used corrugated material was reduced to fiber. Employee #1 did not conduct air monitoring inside the tank before welding on the exterior of the tank. He was repairing a damaged flange connection to a piece of equipment by welding two temporary clamps to the flange to hold the piece of equipment in place. It was believed the welding on the flange exterior ignited a flammable gas mixture in the headspace of the tank and it exploded. Employee #1 and Employee #2 were killed instantly when they fell 80 ft. Employee #3 died shortly after the explosion due to his injuries. A coworker near the tank received minor injuries, which were not recorded.

Keywords:flammable vapors, struck against, welder, gas, explosion, fall, struck by, tank

Investigated Inspection
# Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 309843001 Fatality Fracture Supervisors, production occupations
2 309843001 Fatality Fracture Machinery maintenance occupations
3 309843001 Fatality Fracture Machinery maintenance occupations
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