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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 170166649 - Employee Burned In Flash Steam Explosion

Accident: 170166649 -- Report ID: 0950631 -- Event Date: 04/27/1991
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
11197936505/02/19913471Hamlett Plating
At approximately 3:00 p.m. on April 29, 1991, Employee #1 was pouring caustic soda into a tank containing water when a flash steam explosion occurred and he was splashed by the solution. His supervisor saw what happened, grabbed Employee #1, and plunged him into a neighboring tank of water. The supervisor told him to get medical treatment, but Employee #1 initially refused. When he could no longer stand the pain, he took himself to the UC-Irvine Burn Unit, where he was treated and released. This was not a serious injury accident. The cause of the accident was the reaction of the chemical with water. The water was warm, and the rapid addition of the caustic soda caused the soda to pile up on the bottom of the tank. The increasing heat resulted in the explosion. The supervisor said that he had trained Employee #1 on how to perform this task safely. Employee #1 had been doing it for two months prior to the accident. A coworker who witnessed the accident said that he had also been trained on how to safely complete the procedure. To prevent a recurrence, Employee #1 was to be retrained when he returned to work.
Keywords: burn, caustic, steam, explosion, chemical reaction, corrosive, chemical, high temperature
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 111979365 Non Hospitalized injury Burn(Chemical) Metal plating machine operators

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