A new safety video from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) reveals details on the events leading to the fatal explosion at AB Specialty Silicones.
The incident, which involved the mixing of incompatible chemicals, killed four workers, destroyed the facility and caused damages to nearby businesses.
The video includes an animation of the events leading up to the incident along with interviews with CSB Chairperson Katherine Lemos and the lead investigator on the case.
In May 2019, two incompatible chemicals were mixed at the facility during production of an emulsion product, resulting in a reaction that produced flammable hydrogen gas which ignited and caused the explosion.
More regulation needed
CSB says this is one of many such incidents it has investigated resulting from inadequate recognition and evaluation of reactive chemical hazards.
In a report covering the incident, the agency called on OSHA and the Environmental Protection Agency to address regulatory gaps covering reactive chemicals.
“Closing the regulatory gap will prevent further tragic incidents and save lives,” Chairperson Lemos said. “Together, we can impact safety for our chemical industries, our workers, our community, and our environment.”