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    EXPLOSION FATALITY

    Site explosion kills one worker and leaves a further life in danger

    One man has died and six people injured, one with life-threatening injuries, after an explosion on a construction project in Hertfordshire. A police spokeswoman said “The building itself has sustained some damage but remains largely intact which enables the search to be continued by police officers.” An HSE spokesman said the site was being renovated or converted. 

    Local newspaper, Welwyn and Hatfield Times, reports that the construction project involves building and conversion work for a new data centre. A spokesman for the builders, Laing O’Rourke, told the WHT: “I can confirm there was an explosion earlier today at our data centre project site in Welwyn Garden City. At this point details are extremely limited. Our first priority is to our people and the community, and supporting the emergency services.”

    Jon Smith, Group Commander of Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue, is reported to have said: “a cylinder of gas depressurised, there was no actual fire, the gas is inert, which acted like a missile and set off the other cylinders. Each cylinder weighs about 50kg and is about 5ft tall, they’ve made a real mess of the inside of the building, they’ve taken down walls and floors. They are argon cylinders which were actually being used as a fire suppressant in the building for the computer room. The building is under construction, there is significant widespread damage. The external structure is intact, but 50% of the internal structure has been affected, walls are down, floors are up and walls knocked out. These cylinders have become missiles and fired around randomly.”

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    The addition of content on this website ceased on 17th April 2020.

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