Search

Rainham company fined after employees seriously burnt by fireball

PUBLISHED: 16:00 16 February 2015

General views of Southwark Crown Court in south London.

General views of Southwark Crown Court in south London.

PA Archive/Press Association Images

A family-run refrigeration business was fined £22,500 today after two employees were seriously injured in an explosion.

Jonathan Edwards and James Bellingham both suffered severe burns when they were engulfed in a fireball at the site of CLB Refrigeration in Ferry Lane, Rainham, on October 12 2012.

The company admitted two counts of breaching health and safety regulations following the incident, after which Mr Edwards spent five months in hospital recovering from 60 degree burns to his face and torso.

The company was given a £22,500 fine at Southwark Crown Court for failing to assess a risk and failure to eliminate and reduce a risk in contravention of the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmosphere regulations.

Catherine Rabiotti, prosecuting, told the court that Mr Edwards, 30, had been a trainee at the company for two months when the incident happened.

He and Mr Bellingham, 23, were using paint thinner borrowed from another company, which came into contact with a brazier being used to burn waste.

Judge Martin Beddoe said: “Mr Edwards was very seriously injured – much more so than the other.

“The most probable explanation for the accident itself is that Mr Edwards, who had been a trainee for only two months, poured paint thinner onto that brazier.”

He added: “The defendant company fell far below what was required of it.

“This was a small company and it seems to me that smallness of it undermines the prospect that it had an excuse for its lack of involvement [in assessing the risk].”

Mr Edwards has not worked since the accident, the court was told.

The court heard that the company’s actions had not been the cause of the two men’s injuries.

It was also ordered to pay £9,243 in costs.

Latest Romford News Stories

A college student made it to the final of a prestigious fashion competition at London Fashion Week, showcasing her work on the runway.

09:20

A man was injured following a fight in Exchange Street this morning.

07:00

A Havering care home is trying to raise awareness about dementia by supporting World Alzheimer’s Day.

Yesterday, 18:04

A witness in the Beniamin Pieknyi murder trial told the court today he’d pleaded with the alleged attacker, telling him “it’s not worth it”.

Yesterday, 17:00

A resident has grown a massive pumpkin at a Havering-atte-Bower garden that is said to be 10ft in circumference.

Yesterday, 14:58

Havering’s NHS hospital trust has appointed the former chief financial officer of British Airways as its new CFO.

Yesterday, 13:10

From taking dance classes just for fun, to getting prepared to perform in front of thousands, a teenage street dance group is reaching new heights.

Yesterday, 10:04

A group of volunteers at a Hornchurch Charity are raising funds to provide a multi-sports court and beds for children in Ethiopia.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Vauxhall has completed its sport utility vehicle range with the third, and largest, Grandland X. We put the SUV, now available at Tony LeVoi in Romford, to the test.

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining,” so the saying goes. So if some warm weather is making your conservatory uninhabitable, think about replacing its roof with a flat one and adding a roof lantern instead.

The next step in renewable energy could be right beneath your feet as you walk through a Romford shopping centre.

Newsletter Sign Up

Romford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

News from your area

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now