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Caution advised on cellphone use due to ignition fears

A member has passed on a report of an incident where a contracted specialist was working on an open panel supplying instrumentation gas. He was carrying a cellphone that was turned on and rang while he was working on the panel. When he flipped it open to answer the call, a flash fire occurred, causing second degree burns on his forearms and a ‘sunburn’-type burn on his nose and cheeks.

Although people are aware of electronic devices being a source of ignition, there appears to be very little belief that this type of incident can really happen and, as a result, electronics are still being used with little regard to the potential danger.

Action taken:

The company involved has banned cellphones from being used in the field concerned and has reasserted the danger electronic devices pose if not used in safe locations or in conjunction with a gas detector.

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