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News (106)


PG&E Fined $530K for Safety Issues

Years of botched pipeline inspections and worker qualification problems have dropped a new $530,000 fine on embattled Pacific Gas and Electric Co., California regulators announced.


New System Blamed in Ink Dust Blast

A squeal, sizzle, whoosh and loud thump—not an alarm from a brand-new dust collection system—heralded a blast and flash fire that burned seven employees, three severely, at a New Jersey ink ...


$120k Fine Set in Cellphone Tank Blast

A Texas oil company has been fined $120,000 in a storage-tank explosion sparked by a worker's cellphone, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has announced.


30 Years on, Lessons from a Catastrophe

Invoking the 1984 tank explosion that ignited the world's worst industrial disaster, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board has issued an urgent new call for measures to improve chemical handling sa...


CSB Urges Overhaul of Steel Standards

Federal investigators are calling for drastically improved standards for steel in petroleum facilities, where equipment is vulnerable to potentially catastrophic hydrogen attack.


Fines Follow Fires at Coating Maker

Three separate, and apparently unreported, fires at an industrial coatings plant have triggered a strong response from federal health and safety officials.


2 Killed in U.S. Steel Explosion

Two workers have died and one was injured after a pipe exploded at a U.S. Steel plant in Fairfield, AL


Utility Fined $1.4B in CA Disaster

The California Public Utilities Commission has proposed a $1.4 billion fine—its largest ever—against Pacific Gas & Electric for thousands of state and federal pipeline violations and a catas...


Fatal Crash Destroys 2 TN Bridges

Repairs are underway in Tennessee to remedy an interstate traffic nightmare after a gas truck exploded, killing the driver and destroying two bridges—one of which was brand new and almost co...


Welder Killed in Storage Tank Explosion

One worker is dead and three are injured after a storage tank exploded during welding work at a fish processing plant in Mississippi, authorities say.


PG&E Faces $1.1B Criminal Indictment

A federal grand jury has accused California's largest utility of "knowingly and willfully" violating pipeline safety laws and obstructing the federal investigation into a gas-line explosion ...


U.S. Auditors Fault Pipeline Oversight

The federal agency tasked with pipeline safety is doing an inadequate job and lacks effective management and oversight, concludes a new audit by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Offic...


Pipe Corrosion Blamed in UT Blast

Pipeline walls thinned by corrosion and uninspected for over 20 years caused a major explosion at a Utah refinery—a scenario that has become “all too familiar,” federal officials announced.


PG&E Faces 12 Felony Counts for Blast

Pacific Gas & Electric is being charged with 12 felonies in a criminal indictment for allegedly violating federal pipeline safety laws related to the deadly 2010 pipeline explosion in San Br...


NTSB Investigating NYC Building Blast

Reports of a natural-gas leak have drawn federal pipeline investigators to the scene of an explosion that flattened two buildings and killed at least seven people this week in Manhattan.


Corrosion, Alarm Issues Cited in Blast

Deteriorated coatings, ineffective cathodic protection, and a 24-year gap in inspections led to the rupture of a severely corroded pipeline and subsequent massive fire in West Virginia, fede...


Manitoba Pipeline Blast Probed

Thousands of Manitobans were still awaiting the return of home heating Monday (Jan. 27), as authorities continued to investigate a pipeline explosion that rocked the southern part of the Can...


Fines in Fatal Blast Contested

A Louisiana chemical plant is challenging fines issued in an explosion that killed two workers and injured 80 last summer, authorities said.


Explosions at Chemical Plant Injure 2

Authorities are searching for answers after two workers were injured in two explosions and a subsequent fire at a phenol plant in a Chicago suburb.


OSHA Floats 4 Possible Rule Changes

From spray finishing to chemical safety, the federal government is seeking input on four potential rule changes that could affect the coating and blasting industry.


Corrosion Blamed in Fatal Plant Blast

Stress corrosion cracking and a lack of inspections likely caused the fatal explosion at an Illinois manufacturing plant in 2009, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board has concluded.


Owners Held in Coating Plant Blast

Two owners of a powder-coating factory in Mumbai have been arrested after an explosion that killed one worker and injured two over the weekend.


Pipeline Errors Could Cost PG&E $6.75M

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. is facing a proposed $6.75 million fine after a California judge ruled that the embattled utility delayed and attempted to mislead regulators when it revealed reco...


Senator Relays Deadly Explosion Fines

The company that owns a Texas fertilizer plant where 15 people were killed in an April explosion has been hit with $118,300 in proposed penalties and two dozen alleged safety violations, off...


Blast-Proof Light for Paint Booths

Larson Electronics has introduced a two-foot-long explosion-proof light fixture for paint booths and other hazardous locations with the potential for flammable vapors.


2 Burned in Tank Lining Blast

Two workers were seriously burned this week when an underground gasoline storage tank erupted in a flash fire as they were lining it, authorities say.


Paint Maker Fined $262K in Blasts, Fire

A Chicago-area paint factory rocked by explosions and a fire is now facing more than two dozen safety violations, including allegations of blocked exits and mismanagement of hazardous chemic...


Technology Detects Gas Leaks on a Roll

New car-mounted technology is offering one of the nation's largest utilities a fast, ultra-sensitive method of detecting gas leaks.


LED Gun Light Made for Blasting Work

Larson Electronics, a supplier of explosion-proof lighting equipment, has unveiled an LED blasting-gun light built for abusive operating conditions.


8 Hurt in Navy Boat Work Accident

An explosion during maintenance work at a Navy boat house sent eight people to the hospital on Tuesday (Aug. 20).


Contractor Error Cited in Deadly Blast

Federal inspectors are holding a utility contractor primarily responsible for a natural-gas explosion that leveled a Kansas City restaurant and killed one of its employees in February.


Halliburton Admits Destroying Evidence

Halliburton Energy Services Inc. will become the third corporation to plead guilty to criminal misconduct in the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster that killed 11 offshore workers and un...


Gas Leak Ignites, Collapses Rig

Natural gas from a drilling rig leaked for 14 hours before igniting and partially collapsing the structure off the coast of Louisiana on Tuesday (July 23).


Fatal OH Plant Blast Draws $325K Fine

A deadly explosion at a Cincinnati sewage plant has drawn 22 federal health and safety violations and $325,710 in fines for the facility owner.


Second LA Plant Blast Claims One

Just miles apart, two chemical plant explosions within two days in Louisiana claimed the lives of three people and sent well over 70 others to the hospital.


Plant Explosion Kills 2, Cause Unknown

A chemical plant explosion killed two people and injured dozens more in Geismar, LA, on Thursday (June 13).


New DVDs Detail Chemical Accidents

The U.S. Chemical Safety Board has released a free three-disc set of technical videos detailing some of the nation's worst chemical accidents.


2 Burned in Blast Operation Explosion

Two workers have been critically burned in explosions at an Oklahoma abrasive blasting and coating plant that may have been operating unlawfully, authorities say.


$2.25B Fine Urged in Pipeline Blast

The California utility responsible for a fatal pipeline explosion is likely in for an "astronomical" fine after investigators turned up dozens of preventable problems dating back decades.


Offshore Fires Spur New Demands on BP

For the second time in two years, regulators have ordered BP to address offshore maintenance lapses that have led to fires and risked catastrophes aboard oil and gas platforms.


7 Blasts on AL Barges Injure 3

A spark during cleaning operations apparently triggered seven explosions that blew up two fuel barges and sent three people to the hospital this week in Mobile, AL, the Coast Guard said Thur...


Study: Nuke Site Issues Pose Blast Risk

Leaking radioactive waste tanks, design flaws, and poor safety practices at a nuclear tank farm in Washington could lead to an explosion and other threats to public health and safety, a nucl...


2 Paint Plant Explosions Injure 3

Two explosions and a massive fire at a coatings plant near Chicago this week injured three people and sparked panic in the surrounding area.


BASF Blast Laid to WWII Bomb

BASF has confirmed that an explosive device, most likely a World War II-era bomb, caused the blast that left one person injured Tuesday at a plant construction site in Germany.


1 Injured in Explosion at BASF Site

An explosion at BASF’s plant construction site in Germany has injured one worker, the giant chemical manufacturer said on Tuesday (Feb. 26).


Pipeline Mishap Kills 1, Levels Restaurant

A contractor's drilling error is suspected in a natural-gas pipeline explosion and fire that demolished a popular Kansas City, MO, restaurant this week, killing one person and injuring at le...


Bill Urges Action on Combustible Dust

Five years after a combustible-dust explosion killed 14 workers in Georgia, legislators are again demanding that federal safety regulators set standards for such hazards.


Corrosion, Low Inhibitors Ruptured Pipe

Insufficient corrosion inhibitors and severe corrosion caused a pipe rupture that triggered a massive explosion and blaze last year at Chevron's refinery last year in Richmond, CA, investiga...


$500K Fine Set in Deadly PA Blast

Pennsylvania state regulators have hiked their fine to the maximum of $500,000 against a utility company whose aging pipeline caused a fatal explosion in Allentown, PA.


PG&E Trying 3D Laser for Pipe Safety

A high-tech laser scanner was recently implemented to enhance gas pipeline safety and detect corrosion at Pacific Gas & Electric.


WV Pipe Thinned By Heavy Corrosion

Heavy corrosion caused a pipeline wall to thin to one-fourth of its original thickness, leading to its rupture in December, a new federal report has found.


Feds Order Pipeline Review After Blast

A section of pipeline in West Virginia has been determined “hazardous to life, property, and the environment,” federal investigators stated in a corrective order in response to a December 20...


Fire, Explosions Test Bridge Columns

Researchers are using explosives and extreme fire to test a new style of bridge column that could possibly withstand events like earthquakes or a major blast.


Transocean Fined $1.4B in Gulf Blast

The world's largest offshore drilling contractor will pay $1.4 billion in fines and plead guilty to environmental crimes to resolve federal civil and criminal cases stemming from the 2010 De...


Customers to Foot Half of Pipeline Bill

Two years after a California pipeline explosion killed eight people and demolished a neighborhood, the utility's customers have been handed the bill: $299 million.


Feds Challenge Chevron on Pipe Material

Federal officials are pressing Chevron to justify its selection of an alloy pipe to replace the carbon-steel pipe destroyed in an August blaze at the company's refinery in Richmond, CA.


Corrosion Cited in WV Pipeline Blast

External corrosion could be the cause of a pipeline explosion that ignited a massive fireball, destroyed four homes, and closed part of an interstate in West Virginia last week, the National...


Pipeline Blast Engulfs WV Interstate

Crews were searching for victims late Tuesday after five homes were ablaze and part of Interstate 77 was engulfed in flames from a gas-pipeline explosion that ignited a massive fireball just...


'Human Error' Blamed in Club Explosion

A natural-gas explosion that leveled a Massachusetts strip club, damaged 42 buildings, and injured 21 people has been blamed on the apparent mismarking of a gas line.


Body Found, Subpoena Set in Rig Blast

One body was recovered from the sea floor and divers continued Monday to search for another in the Gulf of Mexico, in the wake of an explosion and fire on an offshore oil platform.


Paint Booth Light is Explosion Proof

Larson Electronics has introduced an explosion-proof, four-foot-long lighting fixture that carries a paint spray booth light certification and T6 temperature class certification.


NM Refinery to Pay $400K in Fatal Blast

A New Mexico oil refinery will pay a record $400,000 fine for a 2010 explosion and blaze that killed two employees and seriously injured two others who were working on a storage tank at the ...


CA Tightens Pipeline Safety Laws

One year plus two pipeline explosions equals three new California laws aimed at ramping up natural-gas pipeline safety.


BP to Sell Off Troubled Refinery

Dogged by multibillion-dollar bills from multiple disasters, British Petroleum has announced the sale of its notorious Texas City refinery to Ohio-based Marathon Petroleum Corp.


U.S. Criminal Probe Targets CA Refinery

Chevron Corp.’s troubled refinery in Richmond, CA, is the subject of a federal criminal investigation for allegedly bypassing pollution control equipment and burning off gas emissions, in po...


2 Workers Burned in Tank Blast

Two Pennsylvania painting company employees have been injured, one severely, in the explosion of a pressurized tank they were welding.


1 Killed, 1 Burned in CA Tank Blast

For the fourth time in a few weeks, a worker has died and another has been injured after accidentally igniting vapors while dismantling an oil tank that they thought were empty


‘Ample Warning’ of Deadly Blast Ignored

A gas company’s failure to heed “ample warning signs”—including several fatal explosions—about its century-old mains led to a catastrophic 2011 blast that killed two families in Allentown, P...


Blast Disrupts Steel Mill Coating Shop

Workers escaped injury this week when a “small explosion” rocked a coating facility at North America’s largest steel mill.


Questions Smolder in Fatal Plant Blast

Authorities are seeking answers after an explosion rocked a century-old paper mill in central Minnesota this week, leaving one worker dead, the facility precarious, and a major local employe...


Coatings Cited in 6-Pipeline Explosion

Overlooked coating failures and lax oversight of high-risk corrosion environments top the list of “foreseeable” causes of a massive 2008 gas pipeline explosion in Western Australia, governme...


3 Workers Killed in AR Tank Blast

Three workers are dead following the explosion of an abandoned containment vessel they were dismantling at an Arkansas oil site.


Adhesive Maker to Pay $600K for Blast

Adhesives manufacturer Bostik Inc. will pay a reduced fine of $600,000 to settle 50 federal health and safety violations stemming from a 2011 explosion that rocked its plant in Middleton, MA...


Company Cited in Fracking Tank Blast

Failure to control sparks and provide fall protection contributed to a tank explosion and blaze that injured three workers at a South Texas fracking disposal site in January, the Occupationa...


CSB Blames DuPont in Fatal Tank Blast

DuPont engineers fatally misjudged the level of flammable vapor inside a 10,800-gallon tank that then exploded during welding at a New York polymer plant in 2010, the U.S. Chemical Safety Bo...


Utility to Pay $70M in Pipeline Blast

Pacific Gas & Electric will pay more than $70 million to the City of San Bruno, CA, as restitution for one of the nation’s deadliest pipeline explosions, which leveled a neighborhood and kil...


Pipeline Blast Tied to Coating Failure

Coating failure is being blamed in part for pipeline corrosion that led to a massive natural-gas explosion in Alabama in December.


Horse Kicked Off Coating in Fatal Blast

A fatal explosion that blew apart a hyperbaric chamber at a Florida equine therapy center was caused by a steel-shoed horse kicking through the chamber’s protective coating, authorities have...


Heater Eyed in Blast at Pipe Coater

A kerosene space heater near a cloud of polymer dust is believed to be the cause of an explosion that injured four employees at an Oklahoma pipe coating plant, officials say.


2 Truckers Injured in Paint Fume Blast

Two men who were apparently trying to warm a tractor trailer full of paint on a cold Canadian afternoon managed to escape serious injury when their propane heater ignited the paint vapors an...


Pipeline Operator Fined $38M in Blast

A natural-gas explosion attributed to thin pipeline walls, inappropriate pipe usage and other violations has prompted a $38 million state fine against Pacific Gas & Electric Co.


RPI Plea Likely in 5 Painters’ Deaths

RPI Coating Inc. is expected to plead guilty to several misdemeanors and financially compensate the families of five painters killed in an underground fire at the Xcel Energy Cabin Creek hyd...


OSHA Program Targets Chemical Plants

Facilities that process and store chemicals will face heightened federal scrutiny, including more surprise inspections, under a new safety program designed to prevent catastrophic releases o...


Plant Operator Rips Fatal Blast Probe

A major wastewater plant owner accused of ignoring tank corrosion that led to a fatal explosion is fighting back with its own photos and a demand for another investigation.


BP Tab in Refinery Disaster Tops $800M

BP has just added another $50 million to its cost for the 2005 Texas refinery catastrophe that killed 15 workers and injured 180 people.


Bad Markings Blamed in PA Gas Blast

Inaccurate gas-line location markings are suspected in the explosion of a line that ruptured this week when struck by a construction crew in the center of a Pennsylvania college town, offici...


CSB Assails Tank Safety, Site Security

Lax security and a mishmash of regulations and standards are endangering public safety at oil and gas production facilities nationwide, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board concludes in a new stud...


Report: Gas Line Leaked 26 Times before Blast

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. knew of more than two dozen previous, unexplained leaks in one of its natural-gas pipelines when it certified that the pipe was free of seam-weld leaks months be...


Alone, Paul Plugs Up Pipeline Bill

Sen. Rand Paul, a Tea Party conservative, is single-handedly blocking progress of a federal pipeline safety bill that has strong support from both parties and the pipeline industry.


Adhesives Maker Fined $917K in Blast

Global sealant and adhesive giant Bostik Inc. faces 50 federal safety citations and $917,000 in fines for an explosion March 13 that injured four workers at a company chemical plant in Middl...


Pipeline Corrosion May Face New Rules

Stronger corrosion control measures are among the mandates under consideration as the federal government weighs new safety requirements for the nation’s gas transmission pipelines.


Firms to Pay $1.4M in MA Paint Blast

The owners and former operator of a Massachusetts paint and ink manufacturing plant have reached a $1.4 million federal settlement in a massive explosion and fire that destroyed dozens of ho...


2 Injured in Tank Cleaning Flash Fire

Authorities are investigating a flash fire that erupted this week as three subcontractors were cleaning out a production water tank at an Oxy USA drilling operation in Colorado.


Fatal Blast Probed at CA Sewage Plant

Authorities are investigating the death of an operator who was struck by steel shards when a 4,500-gallon water tank burst at the Clear Creek Water Treatment Plant, in Redding, CA.


Refinery Tank Blast Kills 3 Painters

UK authorities are investigating the deaths of three painters and another employee in a Chevron oil refinery explosion that also critically injured a fifth worker.


Companies Fined in Fatal NY Tank Blast

A DuPont chemical plant and a contractor with a once-spotless safety record are facing a total of 17 federal safety citations and nearly $117,000 in fines in a fatal explosion at the plant n...


2 Killed When FL Water Tank Explodes

Federal, state and local authorities are trying to determine what caused a central Florida water tank to burst, unleashing a wall of water on an adjacent pump house and killing two men who h...


US DOT Orders Pipeline Review, Repairs

With deaths from exploding residential-area pipelines on the rise, the federal government has launched an initiative to repair and replace aging pipelines across the nation’s 2.5 million-mil...


New Guidance Targets Blast, Respiratory, Training Risks

Explosive atmospheres and respiratory hazards—two deadly industry dangers—are the focus of new guidance documents issued by international and federal agencies. A third initiative takes aim a...


Two Die in Chemical Plant Explosion and Fire

Two workers died in an explosion and fire at a Louisville, Ky., chemical plant at 5:30 p.m. Monday afternoon, according to the Louisville Courier Journal.


No Cause Set in ‘Whistling’ Tank Blast

A Detroit-area tank lining contractor will not be cited in the explosion of a 27,000-gallon tank during lining removal because authorities are unable to determine what caused the blast.


Bill Demands Rules on Combustible Dust

Three years after 14 of his constituents perished in a refinery explosion traced to combustible dust, a Georgia congressman is again trying to force the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health A...


NTSB Reports Lack of Coatings, Bad Welds in CA Pipeline Blast

The National Transportation Safety Board has found faulty welds, sagging coatings, and large uncoated areas on Pacific Gas & Electric natural-gas pipelines that exploded in September.


Zinc Producer Fined $45K in 2 Worker Deaths

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued nine safety citations and proposed $45,000 in fines against the nation’s largest zinc producer for a refinery explosion that kill...


Firms Face $229K Fine in 2 Tank Repair Deaths

Two western Pennsylvania companies face federal citations and fines totaling more than $229,000 in a tank repair explosion that took the lives of two workers in July.


‘Whistle’ Saves Workers Before Tank Blast

Authorities are investigating the explosion of a tank during lining removal at the headquarters of Duratech Systems LLC in the Detroit suburb of Redford, MI.


 
 
   

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