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Accident Report Detail

Accident: 170114433 - Employee Died In Confined Space From Oxygen Deficiency

Accident: 170114433 -- Report ID: 0215800 -- Event Date: 01/10/1991
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
10681268801/01/19913443Cherry Burrell Corp.
EMPLOYEE #1 WAS ASSIGNED THE TASK OF CONSTRUCTING A 200 GALLON STAINLESS STEEL CONCENTRATE TANK. THE PROCESS CALLED FOR A STAINLESS STEEL SANITARY WELD WHICH REQUIRED THE USE OF ARGON AS A SHIELDING GAS. EMPLOYEE #1 CONNECTED A SUPPLY LINE OF ARGON GAS TO AN ATTACHED VALVE TO PUMP THE GAS TO THE INTERIOR OF THE VALVE AND CONCENTRATE TANK. ARGON GAS WAS ALSO RELEASED TO THE ATMOSPHERE WITHIN THE TANK THROUGH THE USE OF A MIG WELDER. EMPLOYEE #1 ENTERED THE TANK, EFFECTIVELY A CONFINED SPACE, THROUGH A 14 BY 30 INCH OPENING. EMPLOYEE #1 HAD NO MEANS OF MONITORING THE AIR QUALITY, NO ESCAPE PLAN, NO OBSERVER AND NO FORCED OR MECHANICAL VENTILATION. THE EMPLOYEE FAILED TO OPEN THE VALVE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE TANK. EMPLOYEE #1 WAS WORKING ALONE AND MAY HAVE BEEN IN THE TANK AS LONG AS ONE HOUR BEFORE BEING DISCOVERED. SEVERAL EMPLOYEES WERE NEEDED TO REMOVE EMPLOYEE #1 FROM THE TANK. EMPLOYER RECORDS INDICATE EMPLOYEE #1 HAD RECEIVED ONLY ONE FORMAL COURSE OF TRAINING (LOCAL ADULT ED PROGRAM - BASIC WELDING) WITH LIMITED FOLLOW UP TRAINING.
Keywords: oxygen deficiency, confined space, work rules, welder, welding, tank, untrained, argon
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 106812688 Fatality Asphyxia Occupation not reported

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