2 men, including S'porean, die of burns from Jurong Island chemical plant fire

A group of workers were carrying out purging of a hydrocarbon pipeline when a fire broke out in the plant at 21 Sakra Avenue on Jurong Island on Feb 7, 2020.
A group of workers were carrying out purging of a hydrocarbon pipeline when a fire broke out in the plant at 21 Sakra Avenue on Jurong Island on Feb 7, 2020.ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

SINGAPORE - Two workers, a Singaporean and an Indian national, died after suffering burns at a chemical plant on Jurong Island on Feb 7.

They were among a group of workers who were carrying out purging of a hydrocarbon pipeline when a fire broke out in the plant at 21 Sakra Avenue.

The 38-year-old Singaporean and the 29-year-old Indian were taken to Ng Teng Fong Hospital, where their burns were treated. They were then transferred to Singapore General Hospital and died after surgery.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) had deployed a combined platform ladder to rescue the two men from the top platform of a process vessel when it responded to the incident at 11.25pm on Feb 7.

The fire involved the top platform of a process vessel and was put out by the company's emergency response team before the SCDF arrived.

The Ministry of Manpower said the Singaporean worker's employer, Celanese Singapore, is also the occupier of the worksite, while the Indian was employed by Texeco Engineering.

The ministry is investigating the incident and has stopped all purging activities at the site.

The Workplace Safety and Health Council said on Tuesday (Feb 11) the fire broke out when the hose connected to the nitrogen supply ruptured owing to high pressure.

Workplaces are reminded to depressurise pipelines before any nitrogen purging. They are also required to conduct risk assessments and implement safe work procedures for all purging activities, the council added.

Correction note: An earlier version of the story said the two workers died in Ng Teng Fong Hospital. This was not the case. They were transferred from Ng Teng Fong Hospital to Singapore General Hospital where they died. We are sorry for the error.