Fire at Plant in West Finley Township, Pennsylvania

by | May 21, 2024 | Industrial Accident

There was a fire at the Bailey Omni plant in West Finley Township, Pennsylvania on May 21, 2024.  According to reports, part of a building collapsed at the location.  The facility includes a mining operation used in the production of fertilizer.  The incident remains under investigation.

Chemical plants that produce fertilizer from slurry, especially those connected to mining operations, are inherently complex and fraught with various risks. One of the primary potential causes of a fire in such a facility is the presence of highly reactive chemicals. Fertilizer production often involves substances like ammonium nitrate, which can be extremely volatile under certain conditions. If these chemicals are improperly stored, mixed, or exposed to heat or ignition sources, they can easily ignite and lead to catastrophic fires. Ensuring that all chemical storage and handling procedures are meticulously followed is crucial to preventing such incidents.

Another significant risk factor is equipment malfunction or failure. Chemical plants rely on a vast array of machinery to process slurry into fertilizer, including pumps, mixers, reactors, and conveyors. If any of this equipment fails due to poor maintenance, overheating, or wear and tear, it can become a potential ignition source. For example, a pump that overheats can ignite nearby flammable materials, or a malfunctioning reactor could lead to an uncontrolled chemical reaction. Regular maintenance and inspections are vital to identify and rectify potential hazards before they result in fires.

Additionally, human error is a notable cause of fires in chemical plants. Mistakes such as improper handling of chemicals, failure to follow safety protocols, or inadequate response to minor spills can escalate into significant fire hazards. In a fertilizer production facility, where workers handle hazardous and flammable substances daily, rigorous training and strict adherence to safety procedures are essential. Implementing comprehensive training programs, conducting regular safety drills, and fostering a culture of safety can significantly reduce the risk of fires caused by human error.

There have been a number of incidents at industrial and manufacturing plants.  A worker was injured when his arm was caught in a conveyor belt at the Dresnek Disposal facility in Morgan Township, Ohio on May 13, 2024.  A worker was electrocuted near Hardin, Texas on May 14, 2024.  There was a deadly accident involving a forklift in Cheektowaga, New York on May 15, 2024.  A worker was killed in an accident involving a trash compactor at a UPS facility in Dallas, Texas  on May 16, 2024.  There was a fire and explosion at the Advantek salt water disposal plant in Westhoff, Texas on May 17, 2024.  There was a fire at the RB Products petrochemicals plant in Scottsville, Texas on May 18, 2024.

Those touched by an industrial accident should know their legal rights and remedies, and act quickly to preserve them. Our attorneys have extensive experience in cases involving industrial personal injury and wrongful death, including those caused by equipment malfunctioning.  The firm has experience in courts across the country and the skills needed to represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives or as a result of an explosion, or been seriously injured.

The experienced attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of an industrial accident.  Please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or to learn more about your legal rights.