August 9, 2007 | Mark Paradies

CSB Investigative Team Examining Fire at Hughes Christensen in Houston, Similar Acetylene Delivery Trailer Involved in Major Dallas Fire July 25

The following press release is from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board, Washington DC.

Washington, DC, August 9, 2007 – An investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) has been deployed to the site of Tuesday’s acetylene fire at the Hughes Christensen Co. manufacturing facility in The Woodlands, Texas, a suburb of Houston.

The CSB deployed a team to the serious explosions and fire at Southwest Industrial Gases Inc. in Dallas on July 25 that caused three injuries, destroyed the facility, and forced the temporary closure of major highways.  Preliminary examination of news video suggests the involvement of a similar delivery trailer of Western International Gas and Cylinders Inc. in both incidents.  The trailers in the Dallas incident were destroyed by the fire.  This week’s incident reportedly resulted in the evacuation of 800 employees.

CSB Investigator Robert Hall, P.E., who will lead the three-member investigative team said, ‘We will be examining the Hughes Christensen incident to see if there are further similarities to the Dallas fire.’

Hughes Christensen Co. is an oil drilling bit manufacturer.  The company is a subsidiary of Baker Hughes Inc., a Houston-based oil field service company.  Western International Gas and Cylinders Inc. is a supplier of industrial welding gases based in Belleville, Texas.

For more information, please contact Public Affairs Specialists Jennifer Jones at (202) 261-3603 or Hillary Cohen at (202) 261-3601.

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