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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 170562227 - Employees Suffer Burns From Caustic Material

Accident: 170562227 -- Report ID: 0854910 -- Event Date: 08/12/1993
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
12461807508/13/19932911Pennzoil Refinery
On August 12, 1993, Employees #1 through #5 at the Penzoil refinery were attempting to remove a thick layer of crust from inside the potassium hydroxide treater. The employees attempted to melt the crust with hot water from the bottom of vessel, instead of from the top as had been done before. The hot water converted to steam in the void space under the crust and created enough pressure to blow the crust out of the top of the vessel. The caustic material blew into the air and rained down onto the employees and equipment. Employees #1 through #5 suffered first- and second-degree burns. Two of the five employees were kept overnight in the hospital for observation, and the other three were released after several hours.
Keywords: caustic, cleaning, steam, high pressure, abrasive burn, falling object, accidental discharge, refinery
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 124618075 Hospitalized injury Burn(Chemical) Miscellaneous plant and system operators
2 124618075 Hospitalized injury Burn(Chemical) Miscellaneous plant and system operators
3 124618075 Hospitalized injury Burn(Chemical) Miscellaneous plant and system operators
4 124618075 Hospitalized injury Burn(Chemical) Miscellaneous plant and system operators
5 124618075 Hospitalized injury Burn(Chemical) Miscellaneous plant and system operators

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