Fire and explosion at Bayer Cropscience facility-W.Virgina

Industrial Accidents

On 29th Aug 2008, there was a large fire and explosion at a Bayer Cropscience facility near Charleston, W. Virginia.  A team from the US Chemical Safety baord reportedly visited the site after the accident, but they have not released any investigation report as of now. The exact cause of the accident remains unknown, but here is some raw video footage, sourced from the citizen news site liveleak.com

There were unconfirmed reports of a tank that stored effluents and chemical waste from different streams exploding and causing the fire, but much remains unknown.

This is another gray area. Many times, the companies who process effluents may have no idea what kind of mixtures and reactions could occur between the effluents themselves, since the proportions may vary from time to time. Also who classifies under which category such unknown waste material goes? For example if you are storing Acetone than, it is classified under Group D (Hazardous Area Classification), similarly how does one decide under which category such unknown ( and possibly explosive and/or toxic waste mixtures) should go?  Any thoughts on this would be welcome.

Also the emergency response wasn’t much to feel comfortable about, as per reports in some local newspapers and media.

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