Health and Safety the dangers of petrol and diesel vapour


As the weather is turning cold, space heaters are being wheeled out. The HSE experience too many accidents involving petrol and diesel vapour explosions.

Author: David Combes
Reading time: 1 minute

This article is 13 years old.

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They quote an incident where a mechanic was siphoning petrol from one car and transferring it to another.  The vapour ignited probably from a space heater at the rear of the premises.  The explosion and fire destroyed the garage and the mechanic was seriously burned and died from his injuries. 

It is often thought that diesel is a safe product to handle but two incidents are quoted by HSE when explosions occurred from vapour build up in fuel tanks being worked on with flame tools.  If hot work is absolutely necessary any fuel tank petrol or diesel must be cleaned and gas freed.  Better still use old working techniques or replace the tanks.

David Combes

In remeberance of David Combes 1948 – 2020

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