Thursday, 11 September 2014

Carpet company fined £11,000 and pressure vessel inspection company fined £14,000 after vessel explodes.

Brinton Carpets Ltd., were fined £11,174 (inc. costs) and Allianz Engineering Inspection Services Ltd., fined £14,100 (inc. costs) after a large pressure vessel exploded.
The circumstances were:
  • Allianz Engineering Inspection Services were contracted to carry out periodic thorough examinations of the dye vessels at at Brinton Carpets' Telford site.
  • A Written Scheme of Examination was in place at Brintons Carpets Ltd, which included 4 stock dye vessels.
  • Although Allianz Engineering Services Ltd were carrying out periodic thorough examinations on the other pressure equipment on site, these 4 stock dye vats had been overlooked for a number of years. 
  • Allianz failed to carry out the required examinations on these vats which meant that the periodic statutory thorough examinations had not been completed for three years.
  • Brintons Carpets had not ensured that suitable and sufficient maintenance of the vessel’s safety devices was being carried out. 
  • During a production run on 4 June 2013, there was a  failure of the regulator and pressure relief valve on one of these vats.
  • This vat exploded. 
  • The lid, which weighed approximately 250kg, was torn off its locking mechanism and hinges and hit the roof of the factory six metres above. Such was the force of the collision that it left a dent in one of the factory roof girders.
  • No-one was injured but one worker was standing just a few feet from the where the lid came to rest.

The HSE inspector said:
“If a piece of pressure equipment fails and bursts violently apart, the results can be devastating to people in the vicinity. It was a matter of pure luck that no one was seriously injured in this incident. There are clear standards set out in the regulations and strict inspection regimes whereby the user has a duty to ensure that equipment, and its safety devices, are properly maintained. This is backed up by the periodic thorough examinations by competent persons to ensure this is happening and is appropriate and suitable. Sadly in this case the user of the pressure system and their competent person both failed in their duties.”

No comments:

Post a Comment