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Waspie_Dwarf

2 Killed at Russian Rocket Launch Site

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2 Killed at Russian Rocket Launch Site

MOSCOW, November 12 (RIA Novosti) – Russian defense officials said Tuesday that two people were killed at the Plesetsk space launch facility last week while carrying out routine work cleaning out a propellant tank.

Another three servicemen were hospitalized after being exposed to poisonous nitrogen vapors on November 9 as they were working in the cosmodrome in the northwestern Arkhangelsk province, the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

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Hmmm to quote a bit of the article:- ' “The servicemen are in no danger of losing their lives,” the ministry said. '

Well, clearly they are. Although the fact that the Russians even actually reported this is commendable, a few years ago no one would have known.

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Well, clearly they are.

Did you not notice this BEFORE the part about the servicemen not being in danger of losing their lives?

Another three servicemen were hospitalized

May I suggest you make sure you read articles PROPERLY before commenting?

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf
a little too aggresive in original form.
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A small nitpick on that article - given nitrogen forms about 80% of our atmosphere.. 'nitrogen vapours' are not poisonous. Some sort of nitrogen *compound* (perhaps one of the hydrazines, nitrogen tetroxide or even nitric acid..?) is likely to be the culprit.

There could of course be so much pure Nitrogen in an enclosed space that the oxygen level is too low.. but that would be suffocation, not poisoning.

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A small nitpick on that article - given nitrogen forms about 80% of our atmosphere.. 'nitrogen vapours' are not poisonous. Some sort of nitrogen *compound* (perhaps one of the hydrazines, nitrogen tetroxide or even nitric acid..?) is likely to be the culprit.

There could of course be so much pure Nitrogen in an enclosed space that the oxygen level is too low.. but that would be suffocation, not poisoning.

I suspect it is the latter, suffocation in an N2 atmosphere. A similar accident killed two workers at Kennedy a few weeks before the first shuttle launch back in 1981.

Novosti articles are originally written in Russian and then translated. The translators are almost certainly not scientists and sometimes things get lost in the translation.

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Just found reference to the incident at Kennedy on wikipedia. My memory isn't as good as it once was, three people died, not two:

Anoxia due to nitrogen atmosphere in the aft engine compartment of Columbia during preparations for STS-1. Five workers were involved in the incident and three died. John Bjornstad died at the scene. Forrest Cole and Nick Mullon died later from injuries sustained in the incident.

Source: wikipedia

It seems there was another similar accident at Kourou:

Anoxia; The new Ariane-5 launch area and Ariane-5 cryogenic M1 main stage were undergoing testing. Technicians Luc Celle and Jean-Claude Dhainaut died during an inspection within the umbilical mast of the launchpad. The cause of death was inhalation of air having a very low oxygen content. There was a reduced oxygen content because of a major nitrogen leak in the confined area of the umbilical mast. The nitrogen leak was caused due to a missing drainage plug in a nitrogen/iced water exchanger.

Source: as above.

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Did you not notice this BEFORE the part about the servicemen not being in danger of losing their lives?

May I suggest you make sure you read articles PROPERLY before commenting?

I did not read it correctly. Was late when I commented.

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Just found reference to the incident at Kennedy on wikipedia. My memory isn't as good as it once was, three people died, not two.

Don't feel bad, I can't remember who I am half the time.

Just found reference to the incident at Kennedy on wikipedia. My memory isn't as good as it once was, three people died, not two.

Don't feel bad, I can't remember who I am half the time.

The other half I can't work my cell phone. Just yesterday the police showed up at my house and turned off my emergency app on my smart phone. Seems they have a maximum number of accidental misdials. You'd think a smart phone would know that, but hell no, seems it's my responsibility for some reason.

Edited by keninsc

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