On December 28 a group of four cavers was in Rehoboth Church Cave in Monroe County, West Virginia. They had entered at 11 p.m. to take photos and stayed long enough for at least one carbide change. As they came through a tight crawlway there was an explosion. Acetylene escaping from the pack of Kenneth Anderson (23) had ignited as he pushed the pack ahead of him. The explosion knocked off his helmet but did no permanent damage. The acetylene generated from the moisture getting at loose carbide in the bottom of the pack -- he had neglected to properly close the lid of his carbide container. On the way out Jay Tompkins (20) was traversing a pool when he slipped form his holds -- the "water belay" saved him from injury.
NSS News, November 1987 (Part 2) V45N11, Page 396.
Wayne Arrington, NSS Accident Report undated, 2 pp.
No analysis has been done.