[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

NTSB CALLS FOR IMPROVED SAFETY MEASURES FOR MOBILE ACETYLENE TRAILERS



Title: NTSB CALLS FOR IMPROVED SAFETY MEASURES FOR MOBILE ACETYLENE TRAILERS

************************************************************
                      NTSB PRESS RELEASE
************************************************************

National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC 20594

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 5, 2009
SB-09-09

************************************************************

NTSB CALLS FOR IMPROVED SAFETY MEASURES FOR MOBILE ACETYLENE
TRAILERS

************************************************************

The National Transportation Safety Board today recommended
that the U.S. Department of Transportation modify current
federal regulations addressing the adequacy of mobile
acetylene trailer design for protection during transport and
the effectiveness and safety of current unloading
procedures. Additionally, the Board asked the Compressed Gas
Association to review its standard for fire suppression
systems at loading and unloading facilities for these
vehicles.

These three recommendations were part of a Safety Board
special investigation report that involved highway vehicles
transporting bulk quantities of acetylene, a colorless
flammable gas used for welding and the heat treatment of
steel, that becomes unstable at elevated pressures. The
Board conducted a special investigation of mobile acetylene
trailers to address the safety issues uncovered.

Acting Chairman Mark Rosenker noted, "Though accidents
involving mobile acetylene trailers are not common, the
consequences of a release of this gas could be
catastrophic." Rosenker continued, "Not only must prescribed
procedures for handling such hazardous materials be closely
followed, but it is critical that all containers are secured
and protected every step along the way."

The accidents included in the study occurred between July
25, 2007, and June 9, 2008. Two accidents addressed in the
special investigation involved overturned vehicles and two
occurred while the vehicles were being prepared for
unloading.

During the overturn accidents, the cylinders mounted on each
trailer were thrown from the vehicles, and their valves were
broken off, releasing acetylene, which ignited. The
cylinders in these two accidents had not been secured to the
trailers to prevent their ejection during overturn. In one
of the unloading accidents, the fire on the initial trailer
spread to cylinders on an adjacent trailer, and in the
other, the fire spread to cylinders on adjacent trailers,
nearby buildings, and vehicles.

The failures of the cylinders on these mobile acetylene
trailers and the resultant damage raise concerns about the
accident protection provided by these vehicles and the
adequacy of the minimum safety standards and procedures
applicable to unloading these vehicles, the Board said.

A copy of the report, including a complete list of the
conclusions and safety recommendations, can be found on the
Board's website, http://www.ntsb.gov/Publictn/Z_stu.htm.

# # #

NTSB Media Contact: Bridget Serchak
202-314-6100
Bridget.serchak@xxxxxxxx

************************************************************

This message is delivered to you as a free service from the
National Transportation Safety Board.

You may unsubscribe at any time at
http://www.ntsb.gov/registration/registration.htm  

An archive of press releases is available at
http://www.ntsb.gov/pressrel/pressrel.htm

Current job opportunities with the NTSB are listed at
http://www.ntsb.gov/vacancies/listing.htm

For questions/problems, contact pubinq@xxxxxxxx


[FAA]     [STB]     [USDA]     [Photography]     [Yosemite Camping]     [Hot Springs]     [Steve's Art]     [SB Lupus]     [Railroad]     [FDA News]

Add to Google