Handling chemicals in small containers



This paper describes three incidents involving buckets or other small, open containers that have occurred at Rohm and Haas facilities. In one, a reaction between sodium and water propelled a bucket with considerable force, resulting in an injury. In another, a fire occurred when the lid of a plastic bucket containing a liquid peroxide became contaminated during filling and was blown off. In the last, a solid peroxide and several different initiators and catalysts were staged on a pallet for use in batch reactors. A fire was caused by the mixing of small spills from the containers on or under the pallet used to hold them. The fire caused severe damage and temporary shutdown of a reactor train. In all cases, a good Environmental, Health, and Safety Review would have identified the problems and the review teams could have easily developed methods to prevent the accident. © 2005 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Process Saf Prog, 2005