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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 601021 - One Employee Killed, Two Injured When Fan Turned On In Tank

Accident: 601021 -- Report ID: 0420600 -- Event Date: 03/14/1996
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
10901534703/15/19962875Cf Industries, Inc.
Employees #1, #2, and #3 were unjamming a clog in the slurry nozzle located at the bottom of a secondary scrubber tank. The exhaust fan that pulls a vacuum in the scrubber tank had been shut off to break the vacuum and to open the hatchway cover on the side of the scrubber tank. The cover was removed. Employees #1 and #3 were approaching the open hatchway when Employee #2 radioed for the exhaust fan to be turned on to remove vapors and heat from the scrubber tank. The suction force of the fan pulled Employee #1 into the scrubber tank. Employee #3 fell outside the tank, then ran for help. Employee #3 then entered the tank to assist Employee #1, who inhaled the liquid mixture in the scrubber tank, which included sulfuric acid, phosphoric acid, and ammonia. He suffered aspiration pneumonitis and died five hours after the accident. Employee #2 sustained scrapes and abrasions, and cuts requiring stitches. He is back at work. Employee #3 suffered emotional hyperventilation and has not returned to work.
Keywords: fan, ammonia, work rules, inhalation, phosphoric acid, laceration, fall, sulfuric acid, tank, communication
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 109015347 Hospitalized injury Other Occupation not reported
2 109015347 Fatality Other Occupation not reported
3 109015347 Hospitalized injury Cut/Laceration Occupation not reported

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