It was the last day of the almost two-week modernization of the fuel tank at the gas station in Zgorzelec (Dolnośląskie Voivodeship). Previously, a team of specialists performed a number of works inside it, including welding. – So far we do not know why the explosion took place, theoretically it had no right to happen – says Jolanta Lipińska-Grzeszczuk, deputy district prosecutor in Zgorzelec.
On Friday after 1 p.m., a fuel tank exploded at a gas station on Daszyńskiego Street. The findings of the services working on the spot showed that three service technicians from the company from Bytom and an employee of technical supervision carried out repair work on the tank.
– One of the men was in the tank when the explosion occurred. The force of the explosion was so great that the worker was thrown onto the roof of the neighboring building, pierced the roof and fell inside – said Wojciech Piechowicz from the State Fire Service in Zgorzelec.
The man died on the spot. His two work colleagues, who were at the tank being serviced, were injured. They were initially taken to a local hospital, but their injuries required specialist care in burn units. A 58-year-old man in a serious condition with burns on most of his body and respiratory tract was transported to Poznań. The 28-year-old was taken to a hospital in Nowe Sola in a better condition.
Over a dozen fire brigades were on the scene, including the operational group of the Lower Silesian Provincial Commander from Wrocław and specialized units from Chojnów and Legnica. Firefighters managed to extinguish the fire, but it did not spread.
Prosecutor’s office: theoretically, it had no right to happen
On Friday, after the firefighting operation was completed, policemen from the investigation and investigation group under the supervision of the prosecutor conducted their activities. An inspection was carried out, part of the documentation was secured, witnesses of the event were initially questioned.
On Monday morning, all documentation was sent to the District Prosecutor’s Office in Zgorzelec. As the deputy district prosecutor Jolanta Lipińska-Grzeszczuk tells us, an investigation will be initiated, most likely under Art. 155 of the Penal Code and Art. 220 of the Penal Code, i.e. involuntary manslaughter and endangering the life or health of an employee.
– Our findings so far show that a professional company from Silesia carried out the modernization of the fuel tank, which was delivered to distributors. The work lasted from the ninth of January. The collection of the tank was scheduled for Friday, January 20, it was the last day of modernization – says Lipińska-Grzeszczuk.
The tank was empty, there was no fuel inside. It was also established that work inside the tank, including welding, had been carried out many times in the previous days. During the inspection it was found that this tank was not connected to any other.
– There is still a lot of documentation to be secured, an expert who knows the technology of modernization of tanks must be appointed. So far, we do not know why the explosion occurred, theoretically it was not supposed to happen. To determine this, we need specialist expertise – emphasizes the deputy district prosecutor in Zgorzelec.
Orlen: the station does not belong to Grupa Lotos
The first information showed that the gas station where the explosion took place belongs to the Lotos Group. However, PKN Orlen denied this information.
The facility is owned by the Hungarian chain MOL. The brand has not yet been changed after it was taken over by the Hungarian concern, it was reported.
The condition for the merger of PKN Orlen and Grupa Lotos was the acquisition by the Hungarian concern MOL of 400 Grupa Lotos stations. “The station where the explosion occurred is one of them” – it was explained.
Main photo source: TVN24