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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 200051324 - Two Employees Burned By Waste Gasoline Explosion

Accident: 200051324 -- Report ID: 0728900 -- Event Date: 08/22/2001
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
30372835608/23/20011799Tnt Fence
On August 22, 2001, two employees were burned while attempting to light a bonfire to dispose of scrap wood. The employees had returned to the job site after working in their normal capacity, installing fencing, and had concluded their normal work shift. The two employees are longtime friends of the owner and decided to stay at the residence to shoot skeet. The employees and the company owner elected to clear the area in which they normally shoot and to burn the wood scraps in a designated burn pit. The pit measured 12 feet by 19 feet across and 6 feet deep. The pit was filled so that it was level with the ground with 6 feet of wood scrap. The company owner left the location to obtain a burn permit from the local authorities. He went to the house, where he was detained by a delivery man. While speaking with the delivery man, he heard a loud explosion and ran outside to see what had occurred. The cause of the accident was established to be an explosion caused by a build up of gasoline fumes ignited by one of the employees. Employee #2 owns a boat which had contaminated gasoline. Employee #2 had drained 20 gallons of the contaminated gasoline into a 55-gallon drum and transported the drum to the home office of TNT Fence. Employee #2 then poured 4 gallons of gas into the burn pit and then poured a gas trail away from the pit. Employee #2 ignited the trail and as the gas burned towards the pit, it ignited the fumes which had built up in the pit. Both employees were off of the clock at the time of the accident. They were assisting a friend with yard clean-up, an activity that occurred routinely. Since the employees were not being paid for the work being accomplished and were helping a friend, OSHA does not have jurisdiction in this accident since there is no employer and employee relationship. The supervisor observed one of the employees walking towards the house and the other driving. Both employees had received burns. Employee #1 had burns on his right leg, right arm, the right side of his face, and stomach. Employee #2 had burns on the back of his right leg, back, and right ear. Employee #1 was taken by air ambulance to the burn center, while Employee #2 was taken by ground ambulance to a local hospital.
Keywords: burn, ear, explosion, pit, arm, face, gasoline, stomach, leg
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Contractor's yard/facility Other Under $50,000
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation Construction
1 303728356 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported FallDist:
Cause: Fencing, installing lights, signs, etc.
FatCause: Fire/explosion
2 303728356 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported FallDist:
Cause: Fencing, installing lights, signs, etc.
FatCause: Fire/explosion

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