This fatal Hotwork Incident is a reminder of the dangers of welding inside Confined Spaces, ESPECIALLY those that contained a flammable liquid or gas! The USCG did an excellent job with this investigation and report, laying out the timeline and facts leading up to this incident that caused this incident to occur. It is a MUST read for those who permit HW activities within confined spaces.
EDMONTON, Oct. 19, 2013 /CNW/ - The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) deploys a team of investigators to the site of a rail accident west of Edmonton in Gainford, Alberta. The CN train derailed 13 cars including 4 units carrying petroleum crude oil and 9 units carrying liquefied petroleum gas. TSB will gather information and assess the occurrence.
The TSB is an independent agency that advances transportation safety by investigating occurrences in the marine, pipeline, rail and air modes of transportation. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.
SOURCE: Transportation Safety Board of Canada
This incident information refers to an accident that occurred onboard an offshore platform in the Gulf of Mexico during maintenance and repair operations to clean several production vessels, including a high-pressure separator, the floatation cell, the wet-oil tank, and two stacked low-pressure separators, upper and lower. A flash fire ignited within one of the vessel’s causing injuries to four crew members.
Right after doing our site assessment, OSHA says that we must identify those spaces that are deemed to be Permit Required Confined Spaces. Many facilities order hundreds of signs to put on their spaces at a pretty penny… in other words it ain’t cheap to label these spaces! So one would think that the labeling/marking would be done properly. Take the image to the left… anyone see anything wrong with this picture? Think in a futuristic way… As shown in the photo, most PRCSs are labeled with a sign on the access way covering. Everything from a hatch door, manway lid, etc. we tend to put the DNAGER sign directly on the access way cover. As it sits as shown in the photo we have no issue, but what happens when the tank is prepped for entry and the access way covering is opened/removed? Now we have an OPEN PRCS without any identification as such; a serious unsafe condition, as well as a failure in compliance.
Lets take a look at what OSHA’s 1910.146 says about identifying PRCSs and preventing unauthorized entry into PRCSs.