Virginia Works Newsletter
December 2003


Why acetylene should never be stored in a closed up vehicle?

Incident Description

  • This incident happened on Monday the 29th of September. A fitter with a work van left an E size oxygen and acetylene cylinder on the back seat of a Toyota dual cab over the weekend. The acetylene cylinder must not have fully closed and a small leak occurred.
  • Over the weekend the acetylene accumulated in the van. On the Monday morning the fitter approached the van and opened the door, a large explosion took place. The ignition could have been caused by either the internal light, the automatic door control or by a mobile phone, which was on the front seat of the van. The fitter, a smoker, received damage to his eardrums and face. As can be seen in the photo, he was very lucky.

What Makes Acetylene So Dangerous!

  • FLAMMABILITY LIMITS (% by volume in air): Lower: 2.5 Upper: 100 - an extremely wide range!
  • Use or store only in a well-ventilated area. (The inside of the truck is not well ventilated)
  • NFPA RATINGS: Health 1; Flammability 4; Reactivity 3


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