The Buncefield Accident
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The Process failure that occurred at Buncefield site, Hertfordshire, UK was one of the landmark incidents in the process safety concerns of vapor cloud explosion. The vapor cloud that formed was due to overfilled large storage tank, containing unleaded fuel. The overflow of the tank was the result of a failed level indicating system and lack of operator‟s attention at the site. A legal investigation on the incident was carried out by Buncefield Major Incident Investigation Board (BMIIB), which presented the causes for the explosion and the recommendations for future prevention. The report briefly discusses the series of steps that led to the major incident. Prior to the Buncefield, a massive explosion on such scale was not predicted; hence the Buncefield incident breaches the worst case scenario that was predicted for vapor cloud explosion. The report also provides the explanation regarding why the explosion breaches the worst case scenario for predicted strength of the vapor cloud explosion. Moreover similar accidents are also presented along with the recommendations presented by Buncefield Major Incident Investigation Board.
Al Faheem, Duaa; Katbeh, Mary Anna; Ziaullah, Abdulwahab (2020). The Buncefield Accident. Available electronically from
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