Victoria Heavy Equipment Limited

Jun 21st, 2015
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Transylvania University
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Victoria Heavy Equipment Limited, family owned and managed firm which had been led by entrepreneurial chief executive officer who wanted to take less active role in business, which contributed to organizational.

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CASE STUDYVOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS EXPLOSIONPage 1SUMMARYThis case study describes an explosion which occurred at a Plant which traditionally had manufactured both water-based and solvent-based coatings. A solvent based process had been bought-in from another manufacturer, but because the plant equipment was different, the process was altered significantly. The Management had no appreciation of the new hazards inherent in the altered process they were operating. As the original process did not have a written basis of safety for freedom from fire or explosion, the consequences of the alteration were not anticipated. There are lessons to be learnt from this incident. Principally, the Management was ignorant of the implications of the change; there was no reference to any experts for advice on fire or explosion prevention; and there was inadequate reference to the existing public-domain information which would have revealed the hazards of the process change. A classic case of not knowing what they did not know. INTRODUCTIONThe incident which occurred involved a simple dissolving and blending operation to produce a solvent based coating. The original process involved the simple dissolution of slabs of wax, granules of hydrocarbon resin and beads of polyvinyl acetate resin in an aliphatic solvent, contained in an open vessel. The mixing vessel was fitted with a large, low-speed anchor type agitator, and to assist in the dissolution, the solvent was heated to a

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