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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 202658126 - Worker Dismantling Boiler Is Burned In Gas Explosion

Accident: 202658126 -- Report ID: 0950643 -- Event Date: 06/19/2013
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31667075107/29/20131795West Coast & Sons Demolition
On June 19, 2013, Employee #1 and his supervisor, of West Coast & Sons Demolition, were working at a refinery where the company had been hired to demolish an old "greenhouse." That demolition had occurred. The property owner had asked if the demolition company wanted to remove a boiler from another, unused building and keep the scrap metal as payment. The demolition company had agreed, and the boiler removal was to occur on June 19. Employee #1, working as a laborer, was assigned to assist the supervisor. On the previous day, June 18, 2013, the supervisor and the building owner had walked to the building where the boiler was located. They had discussed the removal, and whether the utilities, such as water, gas, and electricity, had been turned off. The owner indicated they had been turned off. The supervisor did not ask the owner whether the utility company had turned them off or whether the owner had directed his own workers to turn them off. Employee #1 and the supervisor began working on the boiler removal at approximately 7:00 a.m. on June 19. According to the supervisor's statement during the subsequent investigation, the supervisor first opened valves on the boiler to check whether there was any pressure, with water or fumes coming out. He then went to the meter outside and removed one plug to check for pressure in the lines. He did not notice any pressure or fumes. Then he and Employee #1 proceeded to cut the pipes. There were approximately 50 pipes that needed to be cut. Employee #1 was using a gas powered chop saw, and the supervisor was using an acetylene powered cutting torch. They worked all morning. At approximately 1:30 p.m., Employee #1 cut into a pipe, and a fire ignited. Employee #1 was seriously burned. His supervisor called emergency services, and the Carpinteria Summerland Fire Protection District responded. Employee #1 was transported to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital, where he was admitted and treated for third degree burns to his face, arms, and upper torso. He remained hospitalized for several weeks. The Carpinteria Summerland Fire Protection District reported this event to Cal/OSHA at 4:54 p.m. on June 19, 2013. The subsequent investigation revealed that West Coast & Sons Demolition was in the business of demolition, primarily by hand, of commercial and residential buildings.
Keywords: dismantling, boiler, construction, torso, gas, saw, explosion, pipe, arm, face
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Refinery Demolition Under $50,000
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation Construction
1 316670751 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Construction laborers FallDist:
Cause: Demolition
FatCause: Fire/explosion

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