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Texas Fertilizer Plant Explosion

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by ODEN, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. ODEN

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    If you live around there and know that is a fertilizer plant, what on gods green earth would prompt you to drive your family up to the fire to video tape it? That has to be some of the stupidest Darwin shit I have seen in a while.
     
    #1 ODEN, Apr 18, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  2. VanillaGorilla

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    The same people who will stand on the roof of their house to watch the tornado.
     
  3. ODEN

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    Anyone here have industrial chemical experience? How does a fire break out at a fertilizer factory......this looked like a pretty significant fire prior to the blast? I would assume that if you are handling explosive chemicals that you would have fire propellants pretty well contained wouldn't you?
     
  4. Crown Royal

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    Shit happens. Valves crack, a poor installation from ten years ago can cause an insidious rupture in a containment, lots of things can happen. Rocket fuel factories blow up. So do metal coke factories, magnesium, gas, etc. And if a fire in a place like that can't be put out immediately, they evacuate the facility ASAP because the explosion would turn every single person inside the immediate concussion zone into ash. At that point, they basically have to stand at the outer marker and let it go boom.
     
  5. BL1Y

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    That is how you get fertilizer.
     
  6. lhprop1

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    FTFY
     
  7. Angel_1756

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

     
    #7 Angel_1756, Apr 18, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  8. Whatthe...

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    For a lot of fertilizer plants they produce their own ammonia with methane or some other petroleum feedstock. They crack the hydrocarbon to get Hydrogen Gas and then add Nitrogen to produce NH3. Like Crown said valves leak, pipes fail, somebody drives a forklift into something, etc.
     
  9. Danger Boy

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    Anhydrous ammonia isn't that flammable. It will burn when exposed to air, but it will only sustain a flame when the ratio of anhydrous ammonia to air is really high. It has a low boiling point like LP so it boils off and evaporates when it's exposed. Farmers inject it into the ground using an implement that has knives attached to hoses, which are attached to one of those pressure tanks on a trailer. If the shit were that dangerous there would be explosions happening all over farm country. The biggest danger with anhydrous ammonia is the inhalation hazard. It will burn your lungs and throat if you breathe it in.
    However, if you release a huge amount of it in liquid form into the atmosphere at one time, it will make a big fire. If chlorine is introduced into the mix, then it becomes highly explosive. If you apply enough heat to any pressure vessel it will explode, so I'm guessing that's what probably happened.

    The fertilizer used in the Oklahoma City bombing was ammonium nitrate, which is a dry fertilizer. Ammonium nitrate isn't explosive by itself, but if you mix it with a catalyst like diesel fuel or aluminum powder, it can be ignited with a bullet or a blasting cap. Diesel fuel doesn't work anymore though because it's blended much cleaner (low sulfur) than it was 20 years ago.
     
  10. jdoogie

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    Am I the only one that is sitting here reading Danger Boy and Tom talking really in depth about these explosions thinking "Well, this is indeed informative and interesting. However; I'm also glad I live nowhere near these two for fear that they know waaaaaaaaaaaaay too much about how to blow shit up..."?
     
  11. Danger Boy

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    If you live near me you get to see shit like this:
    Edit: That's 3.5 lbs of ammonium nitrate that we blew up in the video. About 6500 lbs was used in the Oklahoma City bombing.
     
    #11 Danger Boy, Apr 18, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  12. katokoch

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    You mean you never went through a "blowing shit up" phase while growing up??
     
  13. JWags

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    Re: 4/12/2013 WDT

    I never did, till we went up to a cabin when I was 25, got drunk, accidentally tossed a Lysol can into the bonfire and enjoyed the explosion immensely. So we proceeded to throw whatever cleaning products/aerosol cans we could find for the next half hour. Stupid, immature, and kind of dangerous, but amusing as shit. Some of them were pretty gnarly.
     
  14. Kubla Kahn

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    Re: Texas Fertlizer Plant Explosion

    I mean after seeing Arachnophobia who DIDN'T grab every aerosol can and turn them into flame throwers?
     
  15. Revengeofthenerds

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    Re: Texas Fertlizer Plant Explosion

    I still want to know why on earth someone would name their town "West"?
     
  16. Crown Royal

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    Re: Texas Fertlizer Plant Explosion

    I used to work as the Dj at the notorious Country Camping, And there were these shnooks that came every year, would drop cartoon acid and toss chunks of magnesium into their campfire all night to get that super-bright charge of light they create. One idiot wasn't satisfied and tossed in a chunk the size of a five-pin bowling ball.

    Murphy's law. Boom.

    People miles away heard it and it burned dipshit's shirt away up to his armpits. It blew empty tents fifty feet off the site and bark off trees. It was the loudest sound I ever heard in my life.
     
  17. JWags

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    Re: Texas Fertlizer Plant Explosion


    Where does one even get chunks of magnesium?
     
  18. Crown Royal

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    I think one worked in a plant and would steal a few pounds of it every long weekend. Scary, huh?
     
  19. Revengeofthenerds

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  20. shegirl

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    I was at a bonfire when one of the other drunkards there tossed a chunk of that shit in it. It was a total buzzkill.

    That video is incredible. I will say I feel sorry for the kid because basically good old Daddy sat there waiting for it to happen. Hope the kid can hear again.