Monday, June 28, 2021

Contractors accidentally started Rockton chemical plant fire

Via ABC7 in Chicago: 
Rockton Fire Chief Kirk Wilson said in a press release Friday that the June 13 fire at the Chemtool plant near Rockton started when contractors were replacing insulation on an elevated heat transfer piping network. The system heats vessels used in the manufacture of lubricating greases.

"At the present time, the most credible scenario is that the scissor lift struck a valve or other piece of piping with sufficient mechanical force to cause the release of mineral oil," Wilson said. "Chemtool operators promptly detected the release and shut down the boiler. They were in the process of placing containment booms, as well as de-pressuring the heat transfer piping network, when the fire ignited."

Wilson did not say what ignited the oil, and he was not available for further comment. The cause of the explosion remains under investigation.
I imagine that the mineral oil was hot and ignited something flammable? Will be interesting to see the ultimate Chemical Safety Board report. 

1 comment:

  1. It's also possible that the mineral oil itself ignited if it came in contact with any spark or static electricity discharge. Static electrification of mineral oil is risk depending on flow rates and grounding.


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