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Synthron Chemical Explosion
FINAL REPORT: Synthron Case Study
Location: Morganton, NC
Accident Occurred On: 01/31/2006
Final Report Released On: 07/31/2007
Accident Type: Reactive Incident
Company Name: Synthron, Inc.

statistics

Total # of Recommendations
1
Total # of Open Recommendations
0
Total # of Closed Recommendations
1
Total % of Open 0 vs. Closed 100

investigation information

Image
Accident Description
One worker was fatally burned and about a dozen others were injured when a powerful explosion devastated the Synthron Inc. chemical manufacturing facility. CSB investigators believe the explosion was related to the process inside a 1500-gallon batch reactor at the plant, which contained butyl acrylate along with the flammable solvents toluene and cyclohexane.
Investigation Status
The CSB's final report was issued at a news conference in Charlotte, North Carolina on July 31, 2007


 

Recommendations

Protex International
2006-4-I-NC-1

Establish a program to ensure that reactive hazards at Protex U.S. facilities are managed in accordance with good industry practices. At a minimum, the program should: -identify and characterize reactive hazards; -implement, document, and maintain appropriate safeguards; -manage changes to recipes; -document and maintain safety critical process equipment capabilities; -train personnel on reactive hazards, safe operating limits, and the consequences of and responses to deviations; -train personnel on emergency evacuations alarms and procedures, and conduct emergency drills; and, -conduct periodic audits of program implementation to identify and address weaknesses.

Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Closed - Acceptable Action (C - AA) - The recipient has completed action on the recommendation. The action taken meets the objectives envisioned by the Board.
 

 
 

Related Video

Reactive Hazards
7/31/2007 4:00:00 AM
Four major accidents illustrate the dangers from uncontrolled chemical accidents. read more

Download QuickTime Video

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Final CSB Report on Synthron Explosion Finds Inadequate Safety Controls for Chemical Reaction Hazards
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Charlotte, NC, July 31, 2007 - In a final report released today on last year's fatal explosion at the Synthron chemical manufacturing facility in Morganton, North Carolina, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) concluded that the company's management of reactive chemical hazards was inadequate and that the facility was unprepared for a chemical process emergency. The CSB also found that ineffective corporate oversight by French parent company Protex International contributed to the likelihood and severity of the accident.
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