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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 14504674 - One Killed, Two Injured When Leaking Propane Gas Ignites

Accident: 14504674 -- Report ID: 0728500 -- Event Date: 08/27/1990
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
10664266311/19/19905984Ferrellgas, Inc.
At approximately 9:15 a.m. on August 27, 1990, a propane transport tanker truck was unloading propane gas into a bulk storage tank. A large amount of propane leaked from the tanker truck, creating a cloud of propane gas. Apparently, the gas vapors seeped into the office building 28 feet from the tanker truck and reached the pilot light on the building's furnace or hot water heater. Both units were approximately 4 to 6 feet from the door. The pilot light ignited the gas vapor, causing an explosion. Fire engulfed the tanker outside. Employee #1, a customer service representative, was trapped by the explosion and fire and sustained second- and third-degree burns over 82 percent of her body. Employee #2, the bulk storage facility manager, was also trapped and sustained second- and third-degree burns over 78 percent of his body. Employee #3, the transport tanker truck driver, was in the cloud of propane gas when it ignited and sustained second- and third-degree burns over his upper body, face, arms, and chest. The injured employees were transported by Air Vac to the burn unit at the University of Missouri hospital. Employee #1 died at 10:00 p.m. on September 11, 1990. The leak apparently occurred when one of the safety valves, the shut-off valve, or a lead connection between the tanker truck and the transfer hose malfunctioned.
Keywords: burn, pilot light, flammable vapors, work rules, fire, equipment failure, explosion, gas leak, propane, propane truck
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 106642663 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported
2 106642663 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Truck drivers, heavy
3 106642663 Fatality Burn/Scald(Heat) Sales counter clerks

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