Welding Accidents

Oxy Fuel Explosion, a Regulator Burnout, and a Welding Fume Accident

Oxy-fuel Regulator Burnouts and a Scary Welding Fume Story

Regulator Burnout is what happens inside an oxygen regulator when there is dust or other debris and the valve is turned on quickly. The dust or other debris ignites because when the oxygen cylinder valve is turned on quickly, both pressure and temperature spike for a microsecond in a pure oxygen environment.

Oxygen greatly accelerates any kind of combustion and when a regulator ignites it actually can melt the metal in the regulator in seconds, not minutes. The problem is that high pressure oxygen usually streams onto the person who is unlucky enough to be the one who cracked the valve too quickly. Regulator burnouts can also be caused by:


*reverse flow of gas from not having check valves installed.

This story came from one of OSHA's Incident Reports "A worker returning from lunch was preparing to use an oxygen acetylene fueled torch to burn apart a truck u-joint. The worker turned on the acetylene valve, and approximately 30 seconds later opened the valve on the oxygen bottle. An immediate explosion occurred, causing a large fire ball to engulf the worker’s upper torso. The fire which was accelerated by its saturation of oxygen, ignited his clothing, resulting in the worker receiving second- and third-degree burns on more than 50 percent of his body. The cause of this accident was found to be regu¬lator burnout (RBO). Several people are killed or seriously injured each year as a result of an RBO explosion." .

Got your attention?

Get all the information you can on oxyfuel safety, read it, and learn it, before you use oxy-fuel equipment.

Smith torch company as well as Victor offer good safety videos.

Never underestimate the power of mixed oxygen and fuel gas

The video below shows a Chemistry Teacher lighting mixed oxygen and acetylene inside a confined space…a lab vent hood.


His dumb ass endangered everyone in the room...What was he thinking?

Alright, that’s enough on oxyfuel safety.

I have one more Welding Accident Safety Tidbit for you…and its kind of disturbing.

It has to do with Brake Cleaner and Phosgene Gas
How many of you have used brake cleaner to degrease or clean something right before you welded it?

I will bet you wont ever do it again after reading this article.

Please forward this web page about welding accidents to as many welders as you know. It is that important.

All of us get complacent... This is your wake up call.
leave welding accidents page and Click here for the oxyfuel safety page

Click here for the top 10 welding mistakes that could seriously kill your ass

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