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CSB Applauds Airgas for Voluntary Actions in 2016 Fatality on Chemical Accident in Texas

July 31, 2020 / Jeff Johnson

The US Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board issued two significant reports in late July. One praises voluntary actions of Airgas after a deadly incident at a nitrous oxide facility. The second is a factual update to the ongoing investigation of an incident at an Aghorn Operating facility in Texas in which a worker and his wife died from exposure to toxic hydrogen sulfide gas.

The CSB is an independent, nonregulatory federal agency that investigates chemical accidents. In a Safety Spotlight report, the CSB lauds Airgas, now a subsidiary of Air Liquide, for rapidly developing and implementing a robust process safety management program (PSM) in response to an explosion in 2016 that killed one worker.

CSB stresses that the effort was voluntary, as nitrous oxide handlers are not required by US federal law to develop a PSM program. The incident occurred during the loading of a trailer truck at an Airgas facility in Cantonment, Florida. In the transfer,...