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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 200381192 - Cleaning Solvent Fire Kills One And Burns Another

Accident: 200381192 -- Report ID: 0336000 -- Event Date: 11/03/2011
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31576388810/06/20112759Ws Packaging Group, Inc.
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31576387010/06/20112759Ws Packaging Group, Inc.
On October 5, 2011, Employee #1 and Employee #2 were working as mixing and blending machine operators for WS Packaging Group, Inc. Employee #1 was helping an ink technician, Employee #2. He had finished mixing a batch of color and begun to clean the mixer head. The mixing machine that Employee #1 was about to clean was 6 inches (0.15 meters, or 150 millimeters) from a UV light curing unit. Following standard procedure, Employee #1 filled a 5-gallon (18.9 liter) bucket with Nova SP120 Pressroom Products Glaze Remover cleaning solvent. He lowered the mixing head into the bucket and started the mixer. He turned around and walked to the other end of a worktable. Employee #2, the regular ink technician, was working at another table on the opposite side of the mixer from Employee #1. Employee #2 heard a splashing sound coming from the mixer. He turned around to find Employee #1 already at the mixer, attempting to shut down the machine. At that time, Employee #2 observed flames coming across the table from the UV unit. The flames reached the bucket of solvent. It ignited, causing an explosion. Employee #2 ran away from the fire ball, but his left sleeve, pant leg, and backside caught on fire. Witnesses helped Employee #2 extinguish his burning clothing. Employee #2 and the witnesses started for the emergency exit door when they observed Employee #1 engulfed in flames. Attempts to suppress the flames failed due to the splashing of the solvent during the explosion. One of the witnesses used a fire extinguisher to put out the fire. He then escorted Employee #1 out of the building. When police, fire, and ambulance crews arrived at the facility, the sprinkler system had extinguished the fire. Employee #2 suffered second- and first-degree burns to his left arm, leg, and back. He was treated at UPMC Northwest in Seneca, PA and released. Employee #1 was airlifted to UPMC Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA, where he died on November 3, 2011, as a result of his burns.
Keywords: burn, printing press, emergency response, flammable liquid, flammable vapors, printing, cleaning, cleaning fluid, arm, leg
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 315763888 Non Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Mixing and blending machine operators
2 315763870 Fatality Burn/Scald(Heat) Mixing and blending machine operators

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