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This is an interesting post on the Yahoo Biodiesel Forum

Yo' Guys,

Well, I reckon it's about time for me to fess up.

I had a fire last Sept. Although there was no damage to the house, I ended up with 2nd & 3rd degree burns on about 40 percent of my body. Spent about a month and a half in the burn unit in Augusta (GA). Hospital bill was 1.1 million bucks. I have health insurance, but I still had to shell out a load of cash. Oh.. and I also managed to smash up both shoulders to the point that I have a heap of stainless holding them together. (Note: burning oil is slippier than s**t).

Without going into detail my reactor is overbuilt by a coupla hundred percent with some good safety features. The reactor wasn't the issue. I fried my a** (literally) heating up a one gallon test batch.
I did my test batches in a three gallon pot on a gas ring down the cellar and stirred them with a paint stirrer chucked into a drill press. I accidentally turned the gas on high when I meant to turn it off. It caught fire and I quickly extinguished it turning OFF the gas and covering the pot with a damp towel. Then I did the stupid thing, I decided to move the pot outside. I spilled a little oil on the floor and still hot burner and it caught fire again, I slipped in the oil and pulled the whole flaming pot over. Luckily I ALWAYS have a fire extinguisher handy when I make biodiesel, weld, deepfry etc. and put out the fire. Long story short, I called 911 and had a nice helicopter ride to Augusta.

How could this accident have been prevented:

PAY ATTENTION. I should have checked that the flame on the burner was off.
USE THE PROPER EQUIPMENT. I should have use a laboratory stirring hotplate rather than gas ring and drillpress.
DO A SMALL TEST BATCH I should have done a one LITER test batch as opposed to one gallon.
DO THE TEST BATCH IN A SAFE AREA In a shed, outside, NOT IN YOUR HOUSE!.
KEEP YOUR WORK AREA CLEAN. Clean up spills immediately.
ALWAYS HAVE A FIRE EXTINGUISHER NEARBY About the only smart thing I did
DO NOT WORK ALONE Had I not been able to use the fire extinguisher and call 911 I probably wouldn't be sharing this with y'all.
I also should have waited for the oil to cool before moving it. As the say, hindsight is 20/20

Here endeth the lesson. Regardz, Dave (extra crispy) H.
 
Registered: April 15, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Ouch! Thanks for passing this along.

By the way, I've been playing with a DIY eye wash station if anyone is interested. I have "store bought" ones but think I can put together one for less than @20.


2002 F-250, 7.3l on WVO since '04
'82 VW Rabbit diesel 1.6l na
'83 GMC 6.2l Class C RV
'85 F-350, 6.9l flat bed
'85 E-350, 6.9l cube van
2 Mercedes 300SD's
3 Chinese Changfa-style diesel generators- 12kw, 8kw & 7.5kw
Mitsubishi 3 cyl diesel generator/light tower
Kubota 2 cyl. diesel, water cooled air compressor
Onan 12.5kw air-cooled diesel genset
I run my company entirely on renewable energy including electricity from generators running on biofuels.

 
Location: El Dorado, Ark | Registered: July 04, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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