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Dec 19, 2007

CSB Deploys to Fatal Jacksonville, Florida Explosion

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Washington, DC, December 19, 2007 - A board member and six-person investigation team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) are deploying to the scene of a fatal explosion and fire at a chemical plant which occurred today in Jacksonville, Florida.

The team is expected to arrive on site mid-morning Thursday to begin its investigation at T2 Labs, a company that produces octane-enhancing additives for gasoline. According to media reports, three people were killed and several injured in the blast, which was felt several miles away.

CSB Board Member Gary Visscher will accompany a team headed by Lead Investigator Robert Hall, and investigators Johnnie Banks, Francisco Altamirano, Jeffrey Wanko, Mary Nikityn and Lucy Sciallo.

The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. The agency's board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.

The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to plants, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov.

For more information, contact Hillary Cohen, Cell 202.446.8094 (accompanying team), or Sandy Gilmour, 202.261.7614, Cell 202.251.5496, or Jennifer Jones, 202.261.3603.

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