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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 14331888 - One Employee Killed, Two Injured In Explosion

Accident: 14331888 -- Report ID: 0419700 -- Event Date: 05/19/1989
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
1832072106/15/19899999Industrial Water Service
On May 19, 1989, Employees #1, #2, #3, and another worker were installing a fixed ladder to the south side of a 500,000 gallon storage tank used for storing industrial waste water contaminated with petroleum products. Employees #2 and #3 were located on the top of the tank to assist in raising the ladder. Employee #1 and another worker remained on the ground to weld the lower supports for the ladder. After welding the lower supports in place, Employee #1 went to the top of the tank to weld the top support brackets. Employee #1 had completed the left bracket and had just started the right bracket when a fire and an explosion occurred. Employee #1 was blown from the top side of the tank and fell approximately 30ft, sustaining fatal injuries. Employee #2 was blown from the tank horizontally, approximately 15 ft and downward, approximately 30 ft, sustaining critical injuries. Employee #3 was blown upward approximately 10 ft and fell back onto the top of the tank sustaining numerous cuts and bruises. He was rescued with the use of a portable extension ladder.
Keywords: fire, storage tank, welding, fixed ladder, petroleum naphtha, explosion, laceration, fall, tank, water
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 18320721 Fatality Other Occupation not reported
2 18320721 Hospitalized injury Other Occupation not reported
3 18320721 Non Hospitalized injury Cut/Laceration Occupation not reported

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