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Accident Case - Chemical Manufacturing Incident

Quiz Questions

1. On Wednesday, April 8, 1998, at 8:18 pm, nine workers were injured in an explosion and fire at the Morton International, Inc. plant in Paterson, New Jersey. This incident was the result of a runaway chemical reaction during the production of Automate ___________.
Yellow 96 Dye
Blue 96 Dye
Red 96 Dye
Green 96 Dye
2. The interior of the kettle (K-7) was ___________ lined to prevent corrosion of the carbon steel shell and heads.
3. An effective PHA program requires examination of deviations from normal operations that could turn an exothermic reaction into a runaway situation.
4. The objectives of a Process hazard analysis (PHA) are to ___________________________?
Identify the factors in the process that have the potential to cause undesired events
Uncover the foreseeable sequences of events (scenarios) that could lead to the realization of hazards.
Collect penalty when a chemical plant produces an undesired event.
Both A and D
5. Deviations in which of the following areas were important factors leading to the accident?
Process Safety Information
Process Hazard Analysis
Investigation of Problems with Previous Batches
All of the above
6. Morton did not conduct a preliminary hazard assessment when they brought Yellow 96 to production in 1990.
7. NASA’s White Sands Test Facility and Chilworth, OSHA, EPA conducted tests on the raw materials .These tests confirmed that the runaway reaction was not the result of contamination from the raw materials.
8. The operating procedures for Yellow 96 stated that the operators should heat the reactant mixture to 90°C to initiate the reaction; however, in the operators’ experience, following the operating procedures resulted in a temperature _________ that was difficult to control.
None of the above
9. Less than ___________ gallons of contaminated firewater/storm water reached the Passaic River, according to an estimate by Morton

There are a number of emergency measures that can be taken if a process deviation occurs which threatens to lead to a runaway reaction. The prime measures are ________________?

Inhibition of reaction
Quenching of reaction
All of the above

The Yellow 96 batch sheet contained little direction for the operators on how to manage the exothermic reaction between o-NCB and 2-EHA. As a result, each operator ran the Yellow 96 process slightly differently. This lack of direction had safety consequences.

12. Center for Chemical Process Safety publications, provides which of the following?
Funding for the chemical plants
Good practice guidelines
Chemical plant journal publishing unit
All of the above
13. Though Morton did follow their Management of Change procedures to review changes made in reaction kettle and batch size, they couldn’t avoid the explosion.
14. Not addressing which of the following hazards resulted in the following design, operational, and training deficiencies.
The kettle cooling system could not safely control the exothermic Yellow 96 synthesis reaction.
The kettle was not equipped with safety equipment to stop the process to avoid a runaway reaction.
Rupture disks were too small to safely vent high pressure in the kettle in the event of either of the two foreseeable runaway reactions.
All of the above
15. Evaluate the need for and install, as necessary, devices, such as alarms, added safety instrumentation, and quench or reactor dump systems to safely manage reactive chemical process hazards, is one of the recommendation for the Morton International, Inc.’s Paterson, New Jersey Plant after the explosion.