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Lack of Risk Assessment leads to Reaction


A tank had leaked sodium hydroxide solution for some time.  Someone suggested that a good way to neutralize it was to add acid.  No thought was given to how much alkali was present or the consequences of adding neat acid to the ground.  However the lorry driver started to pump the acid on the ground, and then heard the beginnings of a rather large reaction.  The next steps he took were rather large ones....

The Investigation

A proper risk assessment would have highlighted the potential for a large reaction, and would have suggested better ways of dealing with the situation.

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