After January’s unexpected acetylene explosion at BOC’s gases plant in Bristol, the company has opted to halt acetylene cylinder filling at the location.
Earlier this year The BOC Group was forced to stop filling at its acetylene plant in Whitby Road, Brislington, after three men were injured during an explosion. The company has now decided not to recommence cylinder filling at the plant. BOC, owned by The Linde Group, has decided to instead transfer Sureserve cylinder filling from its facility in Newport, Gwent, to the Bristol works. Sureserve gases are typically used by the licensed trade for dispensing drinks.
In a statement the firm remarked, “BOC recognises the expertise and commitment shown by employees at Bristol who have been involved in dissolved acetylene production for many years. However, it is not realistic to continue to have in such a built-up area a factory which has to meet the changed zoning requirements of the Explosives Act.”
The company maintains that this closure will not affect the overall operation of the Bristol plant, which constitutes BOC's largest operational site in the South West.
Back in January considerable disruption was caused when two cylinders exploded leaving three workers with significant injuries. At the time, hundreds of people from neighbouring businesses were forced to evacuate premises as an eight-day operation was launched to cool 440 other at risk cylinders.
Earlier this year, gasworld was granted exclusive coverage of the first significant research into acetylene cylinders. Readers can access the article via our online subscriber's archive.