Firm fined $230k for inadequate safety measures that lead to Tuas fire
Local waste management company, Eco Special Waste Management (Eco SWM), was fined $230,000 on Tuesday last week for inadequate safety measures.
It resulted in a blaze at 23 Tuas View Circuit on Feb 23, 2017.
It took 200 Singapore Civil Defence Force personnel five hours to extinguish the fire that happened at 6.10am.
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said in a statement yesterday that Eco SWM had been convicted under the Workplace Safety and Health Act.
On the day of the incident, a worker was transferring liquid hexane into a plastic intermediate bulk container (IBC) through a flexible metallic hose when a flash fire broke out.
The fire spread. All the workers were evacuated safely and the SCDF put out the blaze at around 11am.
The hazardous waste treatment facility was badly damaged, and MOM found the IBC was not suitable for liquid hexane, which is highly flammable.
It said the IBC could not dissipate electrostatic charges generated during the discharging of hexane.
Eco SWM also failed to adhere to safe operating procedures when in contact with hazardous products.
Hexane and another flammable liquid, xylene, were spilled on the ground during previous work processes and were not cleaned up immediately, forming flammable vapours.
Mr Go Heng Huat, MOM's director of the major hazards department, said companies in the hazardous waste treatment business "have the duty to ensure workers understand and adhere to safe operating procedures at all times".
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