Worker Suffers Serious Burns after Cutting through Gas Pipe
A demolition worker suffered serious burns to his face and forearms, after he cut through a gas pipe with an angle grinder.
The thirty seven year old employee, who has not been named, was working for Birstall Demolition and Plant Services Ltd, on a demolition project at a warehouse in Burton-on-Trent.
Burton-on-Trent Magistrates’ Court was told that the man, from Wakefield in West Yorkshire, was using the angle grinder to cut away material from a mezzanine area, when he cut through the pipe which he believed to be inactive.
However this was not the case and the gas ignited in his face, causing serious burns which had to be treated at the specialised burns unit at Birmingham Queen Elizabeth Hospital, where he remained for two days.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) revealed that the company had failed to carry out the simplest of checks, to ensure that gas pipes had been made safe prior to removal.
Birstall Demolition and Plant Services Ltd of Birstall, in West Yorkshire, was fined £10,000 and ordered to pay court costs totalling £4,256 after pleading guilty to a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act, following a successful prosecution by the HSE.