Case Name, Disaster of Chemical Plant at Flixborough. Pictograph. Date, June 1, Place, Flixborough, UK. Location, Cyclohexanone oxidation plant. Flixborough. disaster. vapour cloud explosion. cyclohexane. loss prevention. risk assessment J.G. BallAfter the Flixborough Report: do we know the real truth?. 1 June is the 40th anniversary of the Flixborough disaster, The Flixborough Plant before the explosion – official report, TS 84/37/1.

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As the New Scientist commented within a week of disastre disaster:. Nor did anyone appreciate that the hydraulic thrust on the bellows some 38 tonnes at working pressure would tend to make the pipe buckle at the mitre joints.

Eighteen fatalities occurred in the Control Room as a result of the windows shattering and the roof collapsing. Retrieved 8 July No one concerned in the design or construction of the plant envisaged the possibility of a major disaster happening instantaneously. In area B, there should not be any other hazardous plants or site roads. Furthermore, it was shown that rapid creep cavitation of stainless steel may occur within minutes at temperatures of degree C or more and under a stress of 4.

It was not known why Flixborough adopted a high inventory process. The temporary pipe acted to twist the flow, and the bellows were ruptured by shear stress.

Explore the Home Gift Guide. Together with the passage of the Health and Safety at Work Act in the same year it led to and is often quoted in justification of a more systematic approach to process safety in UK process industries, and flixbotough in conjunction with the Seveso disaster and the consequent EU ‘Seveso directives’ — to explicit UK government regulation of plant processing or storing large inventories of hazardous materials, currently by the Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations COMAH.

No reference was made to the designer’s guide issued by the manufacturers of the bellows.

Case Details > Disaster of Chemical Plant at Flixborough

This leak gave rise to an accumulation of oxidizable residues in the lagging and spontaneous combustion or a spray which was ignited by induced elctrostatic charges; the result being a flame directed into the inside of an 8in. However, this theory was rejected by the Court. Repoet plant was intended to produce 70, tpa tons per annum of caprolactam but was reaching a rate of only 47, tpa in early Stationery Office Books May Language: The Chemical Engineer At a working level the offset was accommodated by a dog-leg in the bypass assembly; a section sloping downwards inserted between and joined with by mitre welds two horizontal lengths of inch pipe abutting the existing inch stubs.


I was a serving police constable in Humberside Police and at the time of the incident I was shopping in Baxtergate Doncaster with my family when we heard the explosion. A memorial to those who died was erected flixborlugh front of offices at the rebuilt site in It was so informative, we had an argument about whether to focus on the disaster itself or the possible causes of it.

The National Archives holds a great deal of documentation about the disaster and its aftermath, including numerous plans, drawings, photographs and witness statements as well as the Report of the Court of Inquiry.

Unlike the Court of Inquiry, its personnel and that of its associated working groups had significant representation of safety professionals, drawn largely from the nuclear industry rpeort ICI or flixborougj.

A leak occurred at a flange on the non-return valve, located near this 50in. After the disaster, two of the twelve bolts were found to be loose; the inquiry concluded that they were probably loose before the disaster.

After the plant was restarted on April 1st. ACMH felt that for major hazard installations [z] the plan should be formal and include. In addition, the initial investigation revealed that a 50 in. The major problem was thought to be getting reactor 5 moved out of the way. They should now be required to demonstrate to the community as a whole that their plants are properly designed, well constructed and safely operated.

My other grandfather in Scunthorpe said it blew the front door flixborugh. The Petrochemicals Division of Imperial Chemical Industries ICI disaser many plants with large inventories of flammable chemicals at its Wilton site including one in which cyclohexane was oxidised to cyclohexanone and cyclohexanol.

The plant as designed therefore could be destroyed by a single failure and had a much greater risk of killing workers than the designers had intended. No calculations were done to ascertain whether the bellows or pipe would withstand these diasster no reference was made to the relevant British Standard, or any other accepted standard; no reference was made to the designer’s guide issued by the manufacturers of the bellows; no drawing of the pipe was made, other disater in chalk on the workshop floor; no pressure testing either of the pipe or the complete assembly was made before it was fitted.

No drawing of the pipe was made, other than in chalk on the workshop floor. It has never been recovered but the plinth it stood on, with a plaque listing all those who died that flixboough, can still be found outside the church.


Flixborough (Nypro UK) Explosion 1st June 1974

The Factory Inspectorate has standing only where it has promulgated specific regulations [13]. The Court could still be right that a single unsatisfactory modification caused the diasster but this is no reason for complacency. The plant disasster subsequently shutdown for an investigation.

Of those working on the site at the time, 28 were killed and 36 others suffered injuries. It is almost impossible to prevent ignition of a leak the size of that which occurred at Flixborough.

After the explosion, a metallurgical investigation of the 8in. The possible sources of zinc that could cause such an embrittlement attack were the galvanized stairways and the wire securing the lagging.

All modifications were to be supported by a formal safety assessment. This explosion killed 28 men were and injured 36 men on site.

Thu 5 Jun at 5: For most ‘notifiable installations’ no further explicit controls should be needed; HSE could advise and if need be enforce improvements under the general powers given it by the Health and Safety at Work Act HASAWAbut for a very few sites explicit licensing by HSE might be appropriate; [y] responsibility for safety of the installation remaining however always and totally with the licensee.

We believe that the best practices must be followed by all companies and that we have reached a state of technological development where it is not sufficient in areas of high risk for employers merely to demonstrate to themselves that all is well.

In order to maintain production, a temporary bypass pipe was installed between the No. The oxidation unit and neighboring units were destroyed and extensive damage was caused to the rest of the site. Cause After the No. The water spray had been nitrate dosed and after the crack was discovered DSM advised that nitrates were known to promote stress corrosion cracking of mild steel.

A major leak of liquid from the reactor circuit caused the rapid formation of a large cloud of flammable hydrocarbon. The emphasis was upon prompt restart and — the inquiry felt — although this did flixbodough lead to the deliberate acceptance of hazards, it fljxborough to the adoption of a course of action whose hazards and indeed engineering practicalities were not adequately considered or understood.