Poor Design and Installation Caused Explosion in NJ Factory
March 9, 2015
New federal investigation findings indicate that design flaws and installation mistakes resulted in the 2012 fire at the US Ink facility located in East Rutherford, New Jersey. As a result of this dangerous combustible dust fire, seven US Ink employees suffered first and second degree burns.
According to findings by the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, several problems existed at the US Ink facility which potentially contributed to the factory fire and resulting injuries to workers. The new dust collection system, which ignited spontaneously and released a flaming fireball, was poorly designed and improperly installed. As a result, the dust collection system overheated and ignited shortly after it was activated. The report indicates that the dust collection system was never properly commissioned for service.
Investigation records also indicated that US Ink employees were not wearing flame resistant clothing as required by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration.
The investigation team offered several suggestions to improve factory worker safety including tighter regulations on dust handling equipment and a stricter building permit process with less building code equipment exemptions. Current New Jersey regulations exempt “manufacturing, production and process equipment” from national fire protection standards. Additional training of local safety officials on national fire protection standards for combustible dust, and requiring more thorough safety inspections, would also decrease the risks associated with factory dust collection systems.
Combustible dust fires resulted in the deaths of almost 30 workers in the United States from 2008-2012. It is the hope of the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board that an implementation of then safety precautions suggested will significantly reduce the number of combustible dust worker fatalities.
Experienced Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyers at Galfand Berger represent Injured Workers and their families throughout the Delaware Valley
Factory workers injured at the jobsite are entitled to compensation for their workplace injuries. Galfand Berger personal injury lawyers obtain the maximum amount of compensation for injured workers and their families including the costs of past and future medical treatment and rehabilitation, lost wages, emotional distress damages, court costs and attorney fees. Our Philadelphia personal injury lawyers work aggressively to identify all potentially responsible parties, negotiate large six figure Workers’ Compensation settlements and obtain favorable jury awards.
With offices conveniently located in Philadelphia, Reading and Bethlehem, Pennsylvania Galfand Berger represents injured workers throughout Pennsylvania, including the Harrisburg and Allentown region, as well as in New Jersey. Call us today to schedule your free consultation at 1-800-222-8792 or submit an online inquiry form.