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Accident Report Detail

Accident: 200260487 - Employee Burned When Ethanol Vapors Ignite, Later Dies

Accident: 200260487 -- Report ID: 0627100 -- Event Date: 10/19/1998
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
11648562410/23/19982844J.M. Products, Inc.
Employee #1 was in the hot water heater room adjacent to the aerosol packaging line. The 5 ft wide by 12 ft long room had three commercial grade gas hot water tanks in it. The door was open and Employee #1 was standing on a 6 ft ladder that was partially in the doorway and between two of the water tanks. He was disconnecting a supply line of denatured alcohol, which had been drained at a location approximately 75 ft away, in preparation for relocating it. When the joint he had been working on was disconnected, residual ethanol came out as both a vapor and liquid. The ethanol ignited, and a flash fire erupted. Employee #1 suffered burns over 70 percent of his body. He was transported to the local Emergency Room and then to the burn unit at Children's Hospital. He died on October 27, 1998, as a result of his injuries. It is not clear what ignited the ethanol, but possible sources include static discharge, a tool spark, or the pilot light from one of hot water tanks.
Keywords: burn, pilot light, static electricity, flammable liquid, flammable vapors, work rules, fire, ethanol, spark
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 116485624 Fatality Burn/Scald(Heat) Machinery maintenance occupations

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