Company fined $550,000 despite a good safety record
WorkSafe VIC v Supagas Pty Ltd (2023)
Supagas Pty Ltd is a supplier of prefilled industrial/LPG gas cylinders. On 1 December 2017, an individual attended the Supagas’ site to collect one acetylene gas cylinder and one oxygen gas cylinder. The gas cylinders were loaded into a fully enclosed toolbox in the tray of the individual’s ute, lying on their side.
Shortly after picking up the gas cylinders, they exploded. The Court heard that the explosion was likely caused by the two gas cylinders being placed unsecured on their sides (instead of upright) in the ute's relatively low and fully sealed rear compartment, allowing acetylene vapours and air to mix and ignite. The explosion caused damage to nearby cars, houses and powerlines, as well as seriously injuring the individual.
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