Serious accidents can be prevented when more insight into the underlying causes is available. The analyses presented here zoom in on important factors and direct and underlying causes for all types of accident.

Explosion
Release of hazardous substance out of open containment
Contact with hazardous substance without containment failure
Loss of containment from normally closed containment
Fire


Explosion

Accidents where the victim is working with hazardous substances or with devices, appliances or objects that are or can be under pressure, or during operation is the immediate vicinity of this. The harmful energy is released in the form of pressure waves, flying fragments or explosive combustion (deflagration, fire ball).
Hazardous material include:
  • solid explosives (including fireworks, (homemade) bombs, dynamite, etc.)
  • flammable substances (vapor, dust) such as organic matter, volatile solvents or commercial products containing volatile solvents, such as aerosols, paint, adhesives, thinners, gasoline, etc. or other vaporous or gaseous explosives (LPG, natural gas, acetylene, etc.)

With appliances, devices or objects that may be under pressure we mean:

  • closed systems or vessels which normally operate under pressure or can be put under pressure during work (examples: gas cylinders and storage spheres, but also (car) tires, industrial cream syringes and empty vessels extorted as part of the production process)
  • closed systems or vessels that at impact, or (regular or casual) warming may explode.
Download factsheet (PDF, 413 KB)

 

Release of hazardous substance out of open containment

Accidents where the victim is working with hot liquids or other hazardous substances in open drums/containers, or during work in the immediate vicinity of these. With dangerous substances we mean biological, radioactive, toxic, corrosive or irritant substances, but also pots and pans with hot liquids, like liquid metal, cooking oil, water, steam, coffee, tea, soup or extremely cold liquids. With open containers we mean tanks, drums, containers, jugs, buckets, pails, pans and bottles containing liquids not sealed (so they are open or have lids that do not close the container leakproof).
Download factsheet (PDF, 306 KB)

Contact with hazardous substance without containment failure

Accidents where the victim during the work is involved in activities or situations where one can come into direct contact with hazardous substances. This involves cases with:

  • the use of resources with harmful ingredients such as cleaners, paint solvents, degreasers, etc.
  • the handling of potentially contaminated objects (eg hazardous substances on the outside of a container or other object) or the removal of hazardous substances (waste, contaminated soil, spills) or
  • other activities where one can inadvertently may come into contact with a hazardous substance such as a hand in a vat of hot liquid, consuming food or beverages in the vicinity of hazardous substances, etc. This does not involve situations where the substance flows accidentally from a barrel or container.

Download factsheet (PDF, 314 KB)

Loss of containment from normally closed containment

Accidents where the victim works with, or while working is in the immediate vicinity of closed systems with hazardous substances. With closed systems we mean: pipes, barrels, containers, hoses, cylinders, boilers, tanks, tankers, etc., which normally are closed. Hazardous substances are defined as biological materials, radioactive, toxic, corrosive or irritant substances, hot and very cold material and\or substances under high pressure to escape.
Download factsheet (PDF, 391 KB)

Fire

Accidents where the victim:

  • performs activities with fire risk or during work is in the immediate proximity of others that perform similar operations. These are activities where ignition sources are present or may arise from sparks or hot. Examples are working with welders, burners, grinders (hot work), but also cooking, drilling, sawing;
  • uses or while working is in the immediate vicinity of (systems) flammable substances;
  • while working is actively involved in firefighting and\or rescue activities in a fire (including fires which are lit for exercises).

Download factsheet (PDF, 332 KB)