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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 552265 - Employee Dies When Asphyxiated By Hydrogen Sulfide

Accident: 552265 -- Report ID: 0627400 -- Event Date: 11/03/1994
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
10771416411/04/19941321Mapco Natural Gas Liquids, Inc.
A contractor was hired to come on site and "acidize" a clogged water disposal well. The well was located in a 7 ft deep concrete vault. To unclog the well, the contractor put a hydrochloric acid mixture in the well's tubing. He warned the company that this process had the potential to form hydrogen sulfide in the well. After the contractor left the site, Employee #1 entered the well to replace a broken valve. When he broke the seal on the valve, hydrogen sulfide was released into the confined space and Employee #1 was asphyxiated. Coworkers found him later slouched over in the well vault. The autopsy concluded that he died of hydrogen sulfide intoxication. The well was not a permit-required confined space.
Keywords: hydrochloric acid, asphyxiated, repair, confined space, hydrogen sulfide, work rules, inhalation, gas, valve, gas well drilling
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 107714164 Fatality Asphyxia Miscellaneous plant and system operators

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