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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 115513.015 - Two Employees Are Injured When Vacuum Trailer Explodes

Accident: 115513.015 -- Report ID: 0830300 -- Event Date: 02/13/2019
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
1394409.01502/15/2019Stellar Field Service, Inc.
At 11:30 a.m. on February 13, 2019, Employee # 1 was using a propane torch (weed burner) to thaw a discharge valve on a vacuum trailer that had been frozen closed. The trailer had previously been used to haul production water (brine water). Employee #2 was working nearby. After applying the open flame to the valve for approximately 30 seconds the tank exploded. The explosion was presumably the result of over pressurization of the cargo tank as a result of the ignition of hydrocarbon vapors or gases that had remained in the tank after the last load of production water had been emptied at a disposal site. Employee # 1 sustained burns, bone fractures, and was struck by shrapnel. He was hospitalized at a burn treatment center. Employee # 2 was struck by shrapnel. He was hospitalized.
Keywords: propane, chemical vapor, open flame, high pressure, gas, frozen, fracture, flammable vapors, explosion, burn, trailer, vapor, water, shrapnel, valve, propane torch
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 1394409.015 35 M Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Truck drivers, heavy
2 1394409.015 50 M Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Truck drivers, heavy

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