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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 201505385 - Employee'S Pulmonary Adema Is Caused By Aerosol Inhalation

Accident: 201505385 -- Report ID: 0950614 -- Event Date: 01/31/2005
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
30733658602/11/20057699Nationwide Boiler Incorporated
Employee #1, a mechanic, entered a trailer-mounted deaerator tank, which was a confined space, to clean the walls and to remove a pipe elbow. The worker used an oxygen-acetylene torch to heat and then cut the pipe elbow. The heating and cutting process transformed the water in the pipe to steam. Employee #1 exited the 60 in. diameter by 20 foot long cylindrical tank several times, completed his work and left for the day. On the way home, Employee #1 began feeling ill and went to the hospital later that evening. He was hospitalized for observation and treatment of acute pulmonary edema, most likely caused by inhalation of aerosols, bio-aerosols or chemical contaminants, contained in the steam that formed inside the tank. The company did not have procedures for permit-required confined space entry or for the use of ventilation and personal protective equipment.
Keywords: lung, pulmonary edema, vapor, acetylene torch, confined space, inhalation, pipe, tank, cutting and burning
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 307336586 Hospitalized injury Asphyxia Machinery maintenance occupations

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