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Gas explosions in the workplace have doubled in the last five years

Health and safety experts, CE Safety, has analysed data to reveal the injuries and fatalities caused by gas safety failings in the workplace.

The analysts broke down the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) data, looking into how carbon monoxide leaks, gas explosions and other instances have affected people at work from 2015 to 2020.

2019–20 was found to be the worst year since 2015, with 41 gas explosions injuring 35 people. That’s a 58% increase, and out of 11 fatalities over the last five years, eight of those occurred in 2019–20 alone.

However, 2016–17 saw the most people sadly injured by an explosion, with 39 recorded.

Carbon monoxide poisoning

The analysts also looked at carbon monoxide poisoning data in the workplace. They found that there’s been a 34% decrease in carbon monoxide poisonings since 2015, with 96 instances, no fatalities being recorded, and 151 non-fatal injuries.

Compared to 2015–16 in which 146 recorded events of carbon monoxide poisoning, resulting in 225 non-fatal injuries and seven fatalities – the most fatal year since in the last five years.

The data also highlighted the impact of ‘other exposures’ in the workplace.

CE Safety found that injuries from unburnt gas more than doubled, from six reports in 2015–16 to 13 in 2019–20.

Also in 2018–9, there were six events of ‘other exposures’ resulting in an increase of 117% in the last 12 months. No fatalities were recorded, but the analysts found that these exposures did cause 41 injuries over the last year, with 2019–20 being the worst, recording 15 instances.

FMJ August 2021


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