From: "Secretary, ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety" <secretary**At_Symbol_Here**DCHAS.ORG>
Subject: [DCHAS-L] C&EN Safety Zone blog: New incident, same message: DonŐt pour alcohol anywhere near a possible flame.
Date: Thu, 18 Sep 2014 08:21:18 -0400
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Message-ID: 59AE022C-AD54-4983-B02F-B75C5E36AA4F**At_Symbol_Here**

More at

New incident, same message: Don?t pour alcohol anywhere near a possible flame.

At a press briefing yesterday, Chemical Safety & Hazard Investigation Board investigators spoke about what they?ve learned so far regarding an incident at a Denver high school that sent four students to the hospital on Monday: The teacher lit a small pool of methanol to demonstrate its flame properties. When the flame didn?t rise as high as desired, he added more methanol from a 4 L container. The fire flashed back into the container, then emerged as a ?jet fire? that traveled 15 ft to hit a student in the chest. That student was wearing a synthetic shirt and was seriously injured, others sitting nearby were also hurt.

CSB investigators also spoke about the Sept. 3 incident involving a ?tornado? demo at a Reno, Nev., museum that sent nine people to the hospital. CSB had previously released details on that one, which involved pouring methanol from a 4 L bottle onto what was likely a smoldering cotton ball. The only new information yesterday was that the demo normally involves three tornadoes in varying fuel/additive combinations to show different flame colors. Also, back when the museum started using the demo, demonstrators had left the 4 L bottle in another area, taking out to the demo table only the amount needed. ?Out of convenience, over time, the 4 L container itself had started being used in the demonstration,? CSB inspector Mark Wingard said.

?Instructors and teachers are just not aware of the flashback hazard of methanol,? CSB managing director Daniel Horowitz said. ?Methanol has a flash point that?s pretty similar to gasoline. I think that if people knew that gallon containers of gasoline were being brought into classrooms right near flames, they would be horrified.?

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