CSB Team Investigating PCA Explosion in Louisiana

An explosion at a Packaging Corporation of America plant in DeRidder killed three workers and injured seven on Feb. 8.

The U.S. Chemical Safety Bureau has dispatched a three-person investigative team to DeRidder, La., to examine the site of an explosion that killed three workers while injuring a reported additional seven. The explosion occurred at the Packaging Corporation of America (PCA).

Initial reports indicate the explosion occurred when contractors were performing welding on a tank in the pulp mill section of the plant during a facility shutdown. The explosion caused the tank to fly and land in a different area of the plant.

"The CSB has investigated many hot work accidents across the country, including a 2008 explosion that killed three workers at a different PCA plant in Tomahawk, Wisconsin," said Chairperson Vanessa Sutherland. "Hot work incidents are one of the most common causes of worker deaths we see at the CSB, but also one of the most readily preventable."

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