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Accident Report Detail

Accident: 202471389 - Foreman Is Killed And Employee Injured In Oil Tank Explosion

Accident: 202471389 -- Report ID: 0950646 -- Event Date: 06/19/2012
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31483046406/19/20121795Sky Brand Services
At approximately 9:20 a.m. on June 19, 2012, employees of Sky Brand Services, a licensed scrap company specializing in salvage of oilfield tank farms, were working at a tank farm in Arvin, CA. The site was leased by Sun Mountain Oil and Gas, which had categorized the tank farm for an abandonment process. Employee #1, one of the partners of the scrap company who was acting as foreman/supervisor of the salvage operation, was standing on a fixed ladder attached between two tanks. He was using a 3 foot long LPG/oxygen torch to cut into a 3-inch oil pipe line located at the uppermost part of the two tanks. The oil line had not been tested for fumes. An out-of-service 400-barrel oil tank exploded. Employee #1 received blunt force trauma injuries to multiple body parts and was killed. Employee #2 was knocked approximately 60 feet from the exploding tank and landed against a chain link fence on the west side of the location. The Kern County Fire Department notified Cal/OSHA at approximately 9:20 a.m. on June 19, 2012. Employee #1 was transported to the Kern County Coroner's office. Employee #2 was flown by medevac to Kern Medical Center, Bakersfield, CA. Investigation determined the immediate cause of the explosion was failure to test and purge the gas fumes from the 3-inch oil line prior to using the torch to cut into it. At the time of this report, the Cal/OSHA Division planned to issue the employer a serious accident related citation of Title 8 California Code of Regulations 5416(c).
Keywords: demolition, ladder, oil tank, construction, torch, explosion, pipeline, purging, toxic fumes
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Tower, tank, storage elevator Demolition Under $50,000 1 17 X
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation Construction
1 314830464 Fatality Puncture Occupation not reported FallDist:
FallHt:
Cause: Demolition
FatCause: Fire/explosion

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