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Statement following Southall gas explosion

A lawyer who represented people affected by the Buncefield gas explosion in 2005 has issued a statement following the Southall explosion

Posted on 22 October 2020

Two people died and four people are believed to have been injured in the suspected gas explosion at a hair salon and mobile phone shop in King Street, Southall, just after 6.30am, the BBC reported.
 
The explosion is not being treated as suspicious. It is reported to have caused substantial structural damage.
 
The Ealing Times reported that Station Commander Paul Morgan, of the London Fire Brigade, said: “Our crews have searched the property using specialist equipment, including the use of a USAR dogs. We can confirm that, sadly, two people have died at the scene.
 
“It has been a painstaking and protracted incident with firefighters working systematically to stabilise the building and search for people involved.”
 
The crews rescued four adults and a child, reported the BBC.
 
Jill Paterson, a partner at Leigh Day solicitors, represented clients following the Buncefield gas explosion of 2005. It happened 11 December at a major fuel depot in Hemel Hempstead and was the UK’s largest explosion since the Second World War. The blast was heard as far away as the Netherlands and shrouded much of south east England in smoke.
 
The blaze took five days to put out and damage to houses took six months. Residents were compensated for damage and psychological injuries.
 
Following yesterday’s gas explosion, Jill Paterson said:
 
“Over the next few days the relevant authorities, including the London Fire Brigade, will be carrying out investigations to try to ascertain the cause of the explosion. It is also likely that inquests into the deaths will be opened. 
 
“Both these processes are important steps towards working out what happened. It is important that investigations happen quickly to determine where responsibility lies. 
 
“Damage to surrounding property must be repaired, and injuries properly compensated. 

“Events like this simply should not happen and it is important that, yet again, lessons are learned to prevent similar tragedies.”

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Jill Paterson
Inquests Personal injury Fire Medical devices

Jill Paterson

Partner in the product safety team with particular experience in fire appliance injury claims.