Polyurethane is a group of polymers or plastics which appear in the form of a foam. The structure of the polyurethane consists of dodecahedron cells that appear as micro springs (Pollaris et al. 2016). The chemical compositions of polyurethane determine its properties. The paper covers the hazardous chemicals in polyurethane, its, and the response the incident commander of a fire incident due to the chemicals of the polyurethane as addressed in the emergency response guidebook (ERG).
The harmful Chemicals and Properties of Polyurethane
The chemical used in the making of polyurethane is toluene diisocyanate and methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (De Angelis et al. 2016). Diisocyanates contain carcinogenic compounds which are highly flammable and toxic. As well, toluene produces harmful gases when burnt in oxygen. Isocyanides is an air pollutant and are not released to the surroundings. The molecule of the isocyanides has a formula H10N20 and is a yellow solid which is highly soluble in organic compounds.
The Commander’s Response to the Lead Incident
The commander argued that the site was unlawfully located near the interstate highway which is close to the community. Similarly, the layout of the firm was poor, with no separation of the departments such as offloading stations and the welding station following the fact that the handled chemicals are highly flammable. The negligence of such considerations put the community and the firm at risk of fire.
Mitigating the Errors
The departments such as the welding station and offloading stations should be separated since the activities carried at each is risky (Pollaris et al. 2016). Additionally, the company should consider moving the nearby communities to secure distances off the firm or relocate the farm away from the community. Since accident is prone to such industries, the firm should consider setting up a fire safety department near the farm to offer prompt responses in case of fire accidents.
The wind blew the vapor at the offloading chamber to the welding chamber resulting in fires. The firm management should set up emergency responses such as power safety machines to help in times of accidents. Despite the similarities in properties of toluene, methyl diphenyl diisocyanate, they are synthesized in nature. Such industries should thus be set away from people or off the busy roads.
De Angelis, A., Bosetti, A., Millini, R., & Perego, C. (2016). Catalytic Processes for Environmentally Friendly Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate Production. In Chemistry beyond Chlorine (pp. 171-200). Springer International Publishing.
Pollaris, L., Devos, F., Vooght, V., Seys, S., Nemery, B., Hoes, P. H., & Vanoirbeek, J. A. (2016). Toluene diisocyanate and methylene diphenyl diisocyanate: asthmatic response and cross-reactivity in a mouse model. Archives of toxicology, 90(7), 1709-1717.