Twenty-eight workers were killed and a further 36 suffered injuries. It is recognised that the number of casualties would have been more if the incident had occurred on a weekday, as the main office block was not occupied. Offsite consequences resulted in fifty-three reported injuries. Property in the surrounding area was damaged to a varying degree. Prior to the explosion, on 27 March , it was discovered that a vertical crack in reactor No.
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Friday 30 May Mark Dunton Records and research 8 comments 1 June is the 40th anniversary of the Flixborough disaster, an explosion at a chemical plant sited on the banks of the River Trent in Lincolnshire. It was the biggest explosion to ever occur in Britain during peacetime , until the fire at the Hertfordshire oil storage terminal Buncefield in December At Flixborough, 28 workers were killed and 36 others onsite suffered injuries.
Outside the works, injuries and damage occurred on a widespread scale but there were no fatalities. It was recognised that the number of casualties would have been even higher had the incident occurred on a weekday. The explosion was estimated to be equivalent to 16 tonnes of TNT and the subsequent fires raged for ten days.
A considerable amount of property was destroyed in Flixborough and the surrounding villages, and the explosion was heard over 30 miles away in Grimsby. The Atomic Weapons and Research Establishment at Aldermaston produced a report on the infrasonic and seismic waves which resulted.
Some two months before the disaster, a crack was found in one of the reactors. A pipe was installed to bypass the leaking reactor so that the plant could continue production. During the late afternoon on 1 June the temporary bypass pipe ruptured, and a huge quantity of cyclohexane leaked from the pipe, forming a vapour cloud which then found a source of ignition.
The massive explosion destroyed the plant. Eighteen fatalities occurred in the Control Room as a result of the windows shattering and the roof collapsing. Following the disaster there was a huge public debate about the safety of industrial plants and regulations regarding industrial processes were made considerably more rigorous — the newly formed Heath and Safety Commission took a close interest in these developments.
Ralph King suggested that a reaction between water which had settled in one of the reactors and the hot cyclohexane above it caused a massive rise in pressure that blew apart the piping. The causes of the disaster were complex it is impossible to do justice to all the technical explanations here and the debate continues. The blast was such that it threw me full length across the road.
Flixborough, 1 June 1974
Friday 30 May Mark Dunton Records and research 8 comments 1 June is the 40th anniversary of the Flixborough disaster, an explosion at a chemical plant sited on the banks of the River Trent in Lincolnshire. It was the biggest explosion to ever occur in Britain during peacetime , until the fire at the Hertfordshire oil storage terminal Buncefield in December At Flixborough, 28 workers were killed and 36 others onsite suffered injuries. Outside the works, injuries and damage occurred on a widespread scale but there were no fatalities. It was recognised that the number of casualties would have been even higher had the incident occurred on a weekday.
Flixborough (Nypro UK) Explosion 1st June 1974
Yet NIMBYs often have genuine cause for concern, and so it proved when the residents of Flixborough near Scunthorpe in North Lincolnshire fought and lost the battle to prevent a major chemical plant from being sited close to the village in the s. The chemical factory produced caprolactam, used in the manufacture of nylon. This process involved the oxidation of cyclohexane, by combining benzene with hydrogen in six linked reactors. When a crack was discovered in one reactor, a large bypass pipe was installed so repairs could be effected. At A volatile vapor cloud formed as 40 tons of cyclohexane leaked out in seconds.
Daily coronavirus briefing
Flixborough disaster explained The Flixborough disaster was an explosion at a chemical plant close to the village of Flixborough , North Lincolnshire , England on Saturday, 1 June It killed 28 people and seriously injured 36 out of a total of 72 people on site at the time. The casualty figures could have been much higher, if the explosion had occurred on a weekday, when the main office area would have been occupied. The disaster involved and may well have been caused by a hasty modification. There was no on-site senior manager with mechanical engineering expertise virtually all the plant management had chemical engineering qualifications ; mechanical engineering issues with the modification were overlooked by the managers who approved it, nor was the severity of the potential consequences of its failure appreciated. Flixborough led to a widespread public outcry over process safety.