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Eight injured in factory explosion

05 October 2011

In total, eight people have been injured following an explosion at an industrial estate in Surrey, England. As previously reported on HazardEx (Major explosion at electrical recycling factory), witnesses described hearing a loud bang on the Hobbs Industrial Estate in Newchapel, near Lingfield, Surrey, before a large fire broke out.

The casualties were taken to three hospitals; two by air ambulance and six by road. A spokeswoman for South East Coast Ambulance Service commented that their injuries range from ‘less serious to far more serious’. One of the casualties, a male in his 30s, suffered burns to his arms and face as well as inhalation burns. He was treated at the scene and flown to Brighton.

Twelve fire engines were sent to the scene, and fire crews state that they were ‘faced with a serious and escalating fire’.

Image courtesy of Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust
Image courtesy of Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust

An insurance assessor said the premises where the fire broke out belong to a firm called eReco EMEA, which deals with IT and electrical recycling.

Ian Thomson, of Surrey Fire and Rescue Service, said all those in the building at the time of the blaze had been accounted for. The cause of the fire was under investigation and police and fire officials refused to be drawn on whether it was suspicious or what might be responsible, but did add that the fire broke out in the middle unit before spreading to the entire building.

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