Friday, August 23, 2019

Major fire or explosion at an industrial production, transportation, Research Paper

Major fire or explosion at an industrial production, transportation, or storage facility. I have picked the phillips disaster of 1989 - Research Paper Example The explosive force is said to be 2.4 tons of TNT triggered by unidentified source of ignition. The ignition sources could be catalyst activator, forklift, welding or cutting-torch equipments or the electrical gear in the control rooms or in the finishing building. The debris spewed to a distance as far as six miles and seismographic data revealed the explosion at 3 to 4 on the Richter scale. The main explosion was followed by another explosion within 15 minutes when two huge isobutene storage tanks exploded. In all, there were six more explosions at the site (Bethea, Robert). The initial explosion caused the death of 23 persons which included 21 employees from the Phillips and two were from contractors maintenance team. All fatalities occurred within 250 ft of the initial gas point of release (Bethea, Robert). 2. Phillipss operating procedure mentioned that the pipes that supply air to the valve actuator should not be connected during the time of maintenance; however, that was not the case as it could be connected during maintenance. 3. The air supply valves were in the open position to allow the air flow making the actuator to rotate the Demco valve as soon as the hoses were connected. The valve lockout system was not such that it could prevent someone from opening the Demco valve during maintenance of the plant. (Bethea, Robert) b) The lockout device was taken out from the Demco with the air supply reconnected and the block valve was in open state with the leg closed which was subsequently opened to the atmosphere without Demco valve relocked (Bethea, Robert). The site had no fixed gas detection system though it held huge quantity of inflammable material under high pressure. This prevented early warning signals of gas leak or release (Health and Safety Executive). In an attempt to douse the fire, firewater was taken from the

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