From: "Secretary, ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety" <secretary**At_Symbol_Here**DCHAS.ORG>
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Chemical Safety headlines from Google (16 articles)
Date: June 24, 2013 8:03:15 AM EDT
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
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Chemical Safety Headlines From Google
Monday, June 24, 2013 8:03:02 AM

A service of the ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety
Connecting Chemistry and Safety at http://www.dchas.org
All article summaries and tags are archived at http://pinboard.in/u:dchas

Table of Contents (16 articles)

CHEMICAL FACTORY EXPLOSION IN CHINA
Tags: China, industrial, explosion, response, irritant

LEPC: THE ANATOMY OF THE WEST EXPLOSION
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, response

AT A GLANCE: CLAUSES IN FEDERAL LAWS GIVE AGENCIES ENFORCEMENT TOOLS
Tags: us_TX, public, follow-up, environmental

FIRE CREWS CLEAN UP ACID SPILL IN STAPLEFORD
Tags: United_Kingdom, transportation, release, response, hydrochloric_acid

CHEMICAL FIRE EVACUATES SACKETT BUILDING ON PENN STATE CAMPUS
Tags: us_PA, laboratory, fire, response, acids

PLUMSTED ANTIQUE STORE EVACUATED AMID HAZARDOUS CHEMICAL SCARE
Tags: us_NJ, public, discovery, response, picric_acid

INDIANAPOLIS COULD FACE $2.2M PAYOUT AFTER CHEMICAL ERROR AT SWIMMING POOL
Tags: us_IN, public, follow-up, injury, pool_chemicals

DURING MAJOR EMERGENCIES, ASSESSING THE SCENE IS KEY
Tags: Canada, industrial, follow-up, response, fireworks

POLICE: 'HUFFING' LIKELY CAUSE OF FATAL HOUSE FIRE
Tags: us_AR, public, fire, death, gasoline

CITY OF WEST SUES OWNER, SUPPLIER OF FERTILIZER PLANT THAT EXPLODED
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, death, ag_chems, ammonium_nitrate

COLUMBIA: CHEMICALS POSE DEADLY RISK TO SC
Tags: us_SC, industrial, follow-up, environmental, ag_chems

MMWR: HOMEMADE CHEMICAL BOMB INCIDENTS 15 STATES, 2003-2011
Tags: public, explosion, injury, bomb

UPDATE: CONDOS EVACUATED WHEN RESIDENT SPILLS ANT KILLER
Tags: us_CA, public, release, response, pesticides

SHOCK-SENSITIVE CHEMICAL DETONATED IN CONTROLLED EXPLOSION AT UNIVERSITY OF REDLANDS
Tags: us_CA, laboratory, discovery, response, other_chemical

CHEMICAL SPILL CLOSES AIRLINE HIGHWAY
Tags: us_LA, transportation, release, response, acids

MONTREAL FIREWORKS EXPLOSION KILLS TWO PEOPLE
Tags: Canada, industrial, explosion, death, fireworks


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CHEMICAL FACTORY EXPLOSION IN CHINA
http://www.ecns.cn/2013/06-24/69800.shtml
Tags: China, industrial, explosion, response, irritant

A petrochemical factory that's one of the largest acrylic acid producers in China was partly engulfed in fire for nearly three hours yesterday in the Pudong New Area, but no one was injured and 50 fire engines were used to extinguish the blaze, officials said.

The fire was reported at Shanghai Huayi Acrylic Acid Company about 11am as nearby residents heard "very loud" sounds and sensed a "chemical smell in the air," they posted online.

Acrylic acid can be a strong irritant to the eyes and mucous membranes and can be inhaled, ingested or absorbed through the skin.

But officials said tests showed there was no danger to neighbors from chemicals at the factory.

The fire was put out by 1:50pm, according to the Shanghai Fire Prevention Bureau.

The fire occurred after an acrylic acid reactor in a factory workshop exploded during manufacturing yesterday, the company said on its website. Just before the explosion, a reactor tube cracked and caused a leak, the company said.

---------------------------------------------

LEPC: THE ANATOMY OF THE WEST EXPLOSION
http://pryordailytimes.com/local/x479817403/LEPC-The-anatomy-of-an-explosion
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, response

The Local Emergency Planning Committee was in problem-solving mode at the meeting Thursday.
....
Mark Stafford, Pryor Chemical Plant Health and Safety director, broke the event down and lent his expertise to a discussion of the investigation. After showing before and after pictures highlighting the devastation, he gave the committee a run-down of the facts confirmed so far.

"Some known facts about the case are, it was an ag distribution center with reportable quantities, failed to report/comply (with regulatory agencies) numerous times, there were two explosions one occurring milliseconds prior to the main blast," said Stafford. "Some conclusions can be made from the West explosion. There were four storage bins, two of which contained ammonium nitrate. Only one bin of ammonium nitrate exploded and that particular bin was located between two bins of wheat, an organic material."

Ammonium nitrate is an oxidizer, meaning that in a fire it emits oxygen which makes fire burn with greater intensity. It is used to blast rocks, to make gravel and in fertilizer. Ammonium nitrate and diesel fuel were used to blow up the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City. The presence of wheat bins was significant as wheat dust can auto-combust if the dust is not eliminated. Anhydrous ammonia is similar to ammonium nitrate, but is stored as a pressurized gas (anhydrous means 'no water'). Ammonium nitrate is also used as fertilizer. Stafford explained that a sister plant of Pryor Chemical produces ammonium nitrate but the Pryor location does not. In regard to the importance of location, he said a plant, either manufacturing or distributing, should not be located near the general public. The explosion in West occurred quite close to a nursing home, elementary school and apartment building.

Stafford said at this point in the investigation, some possible causes and contributing factors have been eliminated including rekindling, spontaneous ignition, a 428 voltage system in plant, anhydrous ammonia, smoking and weather. He explained what has not been eliminated; a 120-volt electrical system in the plant and intentional detonation.

Weather, he said, was a contributing factor as the wind was over 30 miles per hour.

Many people, including emergency responders, were killed or injured in the blast. Stafford said it is crucial for emergency personnel, like the fire department, to have an understanding of the materials and processes taking place in a given plant; only then will they know how to correctly and safely respond to the situation.

---------------------------------------------

AT A GLANCE: CLAUSES IN FEDERAL LAWS GIVE AGENCIES ENFORCEMENT TOOLS
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/west-explosion/headlines/20130622-at-a-glance-clauses-in-federal-laws-give-agencies-enforcement-tools.ece
Tags: us_TX, public, follow-up, environmental

Federal agencies have a potentially powerful weapon in environmental or workplace safety cases, one that might be used in the West Fertilizer Co. case: "general duty" clauses in the agencies' authorizing laws. Because no set of specific rules can anticipate every circumstance, the clauses make companies responsible for keeping their facilities safe. The clauses include the:
Clean Air Act: Owners handling extremely hazardous substances have a general duty to identify chemical-release hazards, design and maintain facilities to prevent releases and minimize effects of releases.
Occupational Safety and Health Act: Employers have a general duty to provide jobs and workplaces free of deadly or serious safety hazards.

---------------------------------------------

FIRE CREWS CLEAN UP ACID SPILL IN STAPLEFORD
http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/crews-clean-acid-spill-Stapleford/story-19350217-detail/story.html#axzz2Wx8CCm4w
Tags: United_Kingdom, transportation, release, response, hydrochloric_acid

A GARAGE and school were evacuated after a hydrochloric acid spillage in Stapleford.

Fire fighters say a cloud of acid fumes was given off after a large drum containing 1,000 litres of the chemical fell off a lorry at Autotechz garage, in Pasture Road, yesterday and started leaking.


Spillage: Police cordoned off Pasture Road, Stapleford.

Around 500 litres of the acid was spilled in the incident, which happened at about 10am.

---------------------------------------------

CHEMICAL FIRE EVACUATES SACKETT BUILDING ON PENN STATE CAMPUS
http://www.centredaily.com/2013/06/22/3661729/chemical-fire-evacuates-sackett.html
Tags: us_PA, laboratory, fire, response, acids

The quick thinking of a Penn State graduate student may have helped prevent serious damage when an apparent chemical fire started around noon Friday in the Sackett Building.

Dane Kelsey was among several students working in the building at the time when he smelled something burning and saw flames inside a chemical storage room.

That's when the training took over.

Kelsey spotted a fire extinguisher near the door, and working with others, slipped on protective equipment and blasted the flames from a doorway.

"We go through a lot of safety training, stuff like that," he said. "I didn't really think about it. You just do it."

Kelsey said he and another student attacked the flames twice, finally extinguishing them as Penn State police and Alpha Fire Company personnel were arriving at the scene.

Emergency crews took over from there, some of them wearing hazardous materials suits because of the chemicals stored in the facility. The building was evacuated while firefighters assessed the situation.

Penn State spokesman Reidar Jensen later said the fire appears to have started on a cart containing acid and oxidizers that had been rolled into storage.

Kelsey, who is studying environmental engineering, said the reaction between the substances creates heat, though he was unsure exactly how the fire started.

Jensen and students who were in the building at the time said no one was in the chemical storage room when the fire began.

---------------------------------------------

PLUMSTED ANTIQUE STORE EVACUATED AMID HAZARDOUS CHEMICAL SCARE
http://www.app.com/article/20130619/NJNEWS/306190149/Plumsted-antique-store-evacuated-amid-hazardous-chemical-scare?nclick_check=1
Tags: us_NJ, public, discovery, response, picric_acid

PLUMSTED A hazardous chemical found inside an antique first-aid kit forced the evacuation of Red Barn Antiques Wednesday, authorities said.

Police, fire and emergency medical services were dispatched to the antique store at 4:13 p.m. on Maple Avenue after the owner opened up the first-aid kit and found a suspicious chemical inside, according to Dave Rogers Jr., chief of New Egypt EMS who was on the scene.

Fire Chief Steve Morgan investigated and determined the chemical was picric acid, a chemical that was used by physicians back in the 1930s, Rogers said.

"It was a chemical that was used on gauze pads to treat burns many years ago," Rogers said.

Rogers said that depending on how the chemical is handled, "it could become highly explosive."

---------------------------------------------

INDIANAPOLIS COULD FACE $2.2M PAYOUT AFTER CHEMICAL ERROR AT SWIMMING POOL
http://www.courier-journal.com/viewart/20130621/NEWS02/306210135/Indianapolis-could-face-2-2M-payout-after-chemical-error-swimming-pool
Tags: us_IN, public, follow-up, injury, pool_chemicals

INDIANAPOLIS Dozens of people who were sickened by fumes after a chemical reaction at an Indianapolis public pool a year ago have filed claims against the city, raising the possibility that the accident and ensuing evacuation could cost the city $2.2 million.

Documents show city officials have already settled claims totaling $33,456, WTHR-TV reported Friday. The remaining unsettled claims range from $340 to one family filing three separate claims for $750,000.

The claims stem from a chemical reaction that forced the evacuation at Garfield Park pool on June 21, 2012. Seventy people, mostly children, went to hospitals for treatment of symptoms, which included nausea, breathing problems and watery eyes.

---------------------------------------------

DURING MAJOR EMERGENCIES, ASSESSING THE SCENE IS KEY
http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/montreal/During+major+emergencies+assessing+scene/8562433/story.html
Tags: Canada, industrial, follow-up, response, fireworks

MONTREAL Before 150 firefighters from 14 departments arrived to extinguish the blaze at the scene of a devastating explosion at a fireworks warehouse in Coteau-du-Lac Thursday morning, before police evacuated 40 homes within a kilometre of the blast site and before Transport Quebec workers closed 10 kilometres of the nearby four-lane highway, a few first responders had to make quick decisions.

"You're picking the battles you can fight with the people (you have) until more folks come," explained Tom Lewis, a retired deputy fire chief and expert in major emergency management at the Justice Institute of British Columbia.

"You prioritize your problems, so you're putting the right resources in the right place as quickly as possible, hopefully to stop your event from moving, or to quickly make it better."

---------------------------------------------

POLICE: 'HUFFING' LIKELY CAUSE OF FATAL HOUSE FIRE
http://www.baxterbulletin.com/article/20130622/NEWS01/306220032?nclick_check=1
Tags: us_AR, public, fire, death, gasoline

BULL SHOALS A fire that killed an 18-year-old Bull Shoals man and destroyed his family's home apparently was related to "huffing," according to a report from the Bull Shoals Police Department released Friday.

Huffing is the practice of inhaling a variety of chemical fumes, including gasoline, to become intoxicated.

Earlier reports indicated Scott Stracener was smoking a cigarette in his bedroom, and that caused the blaze. Other media outlets reported Stracener was working on a vehicle engine prior to the fire.

---------------------------------------------

CITY OF WEST SUES OWNER, SUPPLIER OF FERTILIZER PLANT THAT EXPLODED
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/west-explosion/headlines/20130621-city-of-west-sues-owner-supplier-of-fertilizer-plant-that-exploded.ece
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, death, ag_chems, ammonium_nitrate

The city of West on Friday sued the owner and supplier of the fertilizer plant that exploded in April, killing 15 people and inflicting as much as $100 million in property damage on the small town.
The lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages, accuses the company that owned West Fertilizer Co. Adair Grain Inc. and the company that supplied ammonium nitrate CF Industries of negligence.
Adair Grain is accused of being negligent in the way it stored ammonium nitrate, the volatile chemical used as a fertilizer that investigators say exploded after a fire broke out at the plant April 17. But the locally owned company had only $1 million in liability insurance, which probably would cover only a fraction of the damage.

---------------------------------------------

COLUMBIA: CHEMICALS POSE DEADLY RISK TO SC
http://www.heraldonline.com/2013/06/21/4967192/chemicals-pose-deadly-risk-to.html
Tags: us_SC, industrial, follow-up, environmental, ag_chems

COLUMBIA Chemical plants, fertilizer warehouses and other businesses that use toxic materials sit perilously close to neighborhoods in many parts of South Carolina, often without anyone knowing the potential risk posed by the facilities.

At least 178 of these businesses pose enough of a threat to surrounding communities that they are required to tell the government how many people would be in danger if a major accident occurred, such as the fire and explosion that destroyed a Texas fertilizer plant and leveled the surrounding community this spring.

Knowing more about toxic threats is important, say those who follow the chemical industry, because spills and leaks occur more frequently than people realize - and in many cases, those accidents occur in heavily populated areas.

---------------------------------------------

MMWR: HOMEMADE CHEMICAL BOMB INCIDENTS 15 STATES, 2003-2011
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6224a4.htm?s_cid=mm6224a4_w
Tags: public, explosion, injury, bomb

Homemade chemical bombs (HCBs) are made from commonly found chemicals. The volume of news reports of HCB explosions suggests they are not uncommon. To determine the number of events involving HCBs in the United States and describe the factors associated with them, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) analyzed data from its surveillance system that tracks spills and leaks of hazardous substances. This report describes the results of that analysis, which indicated that, during 2003-2011, a total of 134 events involving HCBs were reported from 15 states. Among those events, 21 (16%) resulted in adverse health effects (i.e., respiratory symptoms, burns, and skin irritation) for 53 persons. The majority (35 [66%]) of these persons were youths.HCBs are hazardous and especially dangerous if detonated in public areas. Increasing awareness of HCBs and their dangers (particularly during summer months) among first-responders, parents, school staff members and !
others who work with youths might help reduce injuries associated with HCBs.

---------------------------------------------

UPDATE: CONDOS EVACUATED WHEN RESIDENT SPILLS ANT KILLER
http://murrieta.patch.com/groups/breaking-news/p/authorities-respond-to-pesticide-spill-at-local-condo-complex
Tags: us_CA, public, release, response, pesticides

Police and fire officials responded Thursday afternoon to an eight-unit condominium complex in unincorporated Murrieta to investigate a pesticide spill.

Firefighters were called to the scene just before 5:30 p.m. at Montego Bay, off Townview near Murrieta Hot Springs Road.

Less than a quart of pesticide spilled in one of the unit's garages, but residents reported heavy fumes and called for help, according to Jody Hagemann with Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department.

---------------------------------------------

SHOCK-SENSITIVE CHEMICAL DETONATED IN CONTROLLED EXPLOSION AT UNIVERSITY OF REDLANDS
http://www.sbsun.com/news/ci_23505036/shock-sensitive-chemical-detonated-controlled-explosion-at-university
Tags: us_CA, laboratory, discovery, response, other_chemical

The booming soundwaves radiating from the University of Redlands campus Thursday morning resulted from a controlled detonation of a dangerous chemical.

Tert-butoxycarbonyl azide was once used by the science department for research. The material, manufactured in 1973, was in the university's inventory for about six years, according to Teresa Fricke, environmental health and safety manager at the U of R.

"We do a periodic inventory review of our chemical storage room," Fricke said. "We found that the staff wouldn't be using this chemical anymore."

The explosive material used for protein synthesis can't be legally transported anymore because it is shock sensitive, according to Tracey Martinez, San Bernardino County Fire spokeswoman.

---------------------------------------------

CHEMICAL SPILL CLOSES AIRLINE HIGHWAY
http://www.noladefender.com/content/chemical-spill-clo61es89-airline-highway
Tags: us_LA, transportation, release, response, acids

A chemical spill shut down a section of Airline Highway at the border between St. Charles Parish and St. John the Baptist on Thursday morning, according to officials. A truck carrying hydrochloric acid spilled on the St. John side of Highway 61, according to St. Charles Parish officials. Officials began evacuating the area due to wind and rain soon after the incident.

The spill is said to be taking place between Bayou Steel Rd. and CC Rd. According to the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff's office, a 250 gallon container broke loose from an 18-wheeler, and fell on the road. Louisiana State Police hazmat crews will put soda ash on the road to neutralize the chemical, the Sheriff's office said.

As crews work to clean the road, the evacuation is being ordered for homes about a quarter-mile from the spill site. Officials say hydrochloric acid irritates the lungs.

---------------------------------------------

MONTREAL FIREWORKS EXPLOSION KILLS TWO PEOPLE
http://news.sky.com/story/1106399/montreal-fireworks-explosion-kills-two-people
Tags: Canada, industrial, explosion, death, fireworks

Two people have been killed in a massive explosion at a fireworks factory near Montreal in Canada.

The blast at the BEM Fireworks facility was felt in the suburb of Coteau-du-Lac, some 37 miles southwest of the city, on Thursday afternoon.

Police evacuated the area around the factory and a nearby highway was temporarily shut down. However officers later re-opened roads and let residents back into their homes.

The cause of the blast and the subsequent fire is not yet known.

---------------------------------------------


Ralph Stuart
secretary**At_Symbol_Here**dchas.org
Secretary
Division of Chemical Health and Safety
American Chemical Society

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