A typical method of removal for cast iron pipe is to break it with a sledge hammer. Was this done in this case and if so, did it initiate the explosion. They can be removed with more delicate methods such as using a chain break.
Assistant Director/Environmental Manager
Indiana University Bloomington
1514 E. 3rd St.
Bloomington, IN 47405
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**med.cornell.edu] On Behalf Of Ralph B. Stuart
Sent: Tuesday, August 27, 2013 8:06 AM
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Lab Plumbing question
A friend writes:
"We received a call from a Healthcare setting whose plumber was removing a cast iron waste line trap from their chemistry lab and it "exploded". No flash, but a boom and the line broke apart. Evidently reagents from tests had been poured down that line and it was dry at the time.
"He is sending me the MSDS' but he has identified Sodium Azide as potential culprit.
"Have you run into this and/or come up with a way to evaluate the lines for hazards and/or flush the material out of the lines? The FDA has a good fact sheet regarding how to avoid the problem, but not much about what to do if you already have the problem."
I wonder if anyone knows of a field test to determine whether plumbing has metal azide contamination?
Ralph Stuart CIH
Chemical Hygiene Officer
Department of Environmental Health and Safety Cornell University
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