OSHA cites Textron Aviation as part of explosion investigation

(OSHA has cited Textron Aviation for a December 2019 explosion at a Wichita, KS plant that left 15 employees hurt.

According to the citation and notification of penalty from the U.S. Department of Labor, Textron had a serious violation when it failed to protect employees from “autoclave explosion hazards.”

The DOL said the liquid nitrogen in a pressurized vessel, referred to as Autoclave 8, built up and the head suffered a “catastrophic thermal fatigue failure.” The result was an explosion that critically injured 15 employees and exposed them to the harms of amputation, broken bones, concussions, crushing, laceration and struck-by hazards, according to the labor department.

The proposed penalty for the violation is $13,494. The aviation manufacturer must also develop and implement measures to “effectively control, discover, maintain and repair pressure vessels, including autoclaves.”

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