Report: Smith County oilfield was unsafe

The U.S. Chemical Safety Board says unsafe work conditions contributed to a deadly oilfield explosion in Smith County in 2006.

The board, an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents, released its findings about the oilfield explosion at a news conference in Jackson.

Three workers were killed in the June 5, 2006, explosion at the Partridge-Raleigh LLC oil field about six miles southwest of Raleigh.

The Chemical Safety Board also called for the Mississippi Oil and Gas Board to provide the Occupational Safety and Health Administration with a list of potentially unsafe conditions it finds during its field inspections of oilfield and drilling operations.

In September 2006, OSHA said its investigation found the accident occurred as employees welded pipes connecting used oil storage tanks.

The federal agency said vapors in one tank that contained oil residue traveled through the piping and sparks ignited the vapors.

Those killed and injured were employees of Stringer Oilfield Services.