Be careful with solvents……

Home Forum Safety Be careful with solvents……

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    US Member - 2 Years
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    Don’t clean work clothes grease spots with anything like gas………but if you do, let them totally evaporate before washing. When I was on our city Fire Department in the 80s, We got a most unusual call one evening. A fellow was a mechanic and decided to cut some really nasty grease off of his coveralls with some Coleman Fuel. He finally got off as much as he could and threw them into a washing machine in warm water. Everything went well until the beginning of the rinse cycle when the motor kicked in. When that happened the washer motor sparked and his washing machine exploded. He had just left the washroom and his wife had just walked out of the joining kitchen. It was so powerful, it ripped the wash room door out of the frame and sent it across the kitchen like a missile and put a 4 inch deep gash in the refrigerator. the blast knocked stuff off of shelves all over the house and even broke glasses, dishes, and picture frames. They also had drywall damage and broken stuff in several rooms upstairs. He and his wife missed being killed by seconds. As well as we could figure the gas in the clothes distilled out and poured down around the tub and motor. When the air/fuel mixture was just right, the spark from the motor touched it off. So…..just think before you use any type of solvent!


    Canada Member - 2 Years
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    Good point!

    Just to add to that story, I once knew a roofer who got hot tar all over his jeans. He washed them in gasoline before taking them to the laundromat to finish the job. To make a long story short, when it blew, the glass front of the building ended up on the other side of the street. They said if the building didn’t have a glass front, the walls would have blown out causing the floors above to collapse.


    US Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 1169
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    Reminds me of working with Sodium Azide, the propellant in air bags. We made our own fuel using the sodium & oxidizer, then pressed into silver dollar 1″ thick pieces. The huge mixing bowl had about 20 pounds being mixed when the scoop (robotic arm) fell into the bowl & blew out the blow out wall & flattened the desert for 1/4 mile. Nasty chemical that burns 80 times faster than hot gun powder & destroys lungs, heart & digestive track. Oh that explosion
    Killed 7 horses by the next ranch from the fumes. Nastyest chemical that saved lives.
    BE CAREFUL OF WHAT YOU WORK WITH!! Oh, the pay was good but now I’m breathing at 35% & can’t do much, BUMMER!!


    Lifetime Member
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    I had a friend when I was working at the Wards Service Center in Allen Park Michigan that was from Texas. In his previous job as a truck driver for Dupont. He drove a special refrigerated air suspension truck to the munitions factory. The highway was closed and a police car preceded him by 3/4 of a mile and another followed by the same distance. He alternated on these nitroglycerin runs with another driver, who was a friend. He thought the pay for working 2 days a week was fantastic. With that special truck, what could possibly go wrong. His buddy was driving when it did. The explosion took out a quarter mile of highway and left a 50 foot crater. – That was the day he started his move to Michigan.

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