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York woman suffers 40% burns from petrol


10:09am 30th March 2012
(Updated 3:49pm 30th March 2012)

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (NYFRS) attended a domestic property fire in York yesterday involving a female occupier who was in her kitchen and whilst de-canting petrol from one container to another the petrol ignited and set fire to her clothing.

The Lady in her mid 40s and from the Acomb area of York was treated by ambulance personnel and was taken to Pinderfields Hospital with 40% burns to her whole body.

2 firefighters wearing breathing apparatus used a hose reel jet to extinguish a small fire in the kitchen and removed the remaining petrol.

Peter Hudson spokesman for NYFRS said:

"Members of the public should take extreme care when handling and storing petrol and be aware of the risks associated with incorrect use and storage of fuel.  

"In domestic situations fuel containers must not be stored in living accommodation such as kitchens, living rooms and bedrooms or under staircases.

"Any storage place should be well away from living areas and be secured to protect against the possibility of vandalism or arson".

"Never bring petrol in side your home. If you do smell petrol fumes in a garage or out building ventilate the area and make sure nobody smokes or turns electrical switches on or off.

"The slightest spark could cause an explosion."

Here's Lee Smith from North Yorkshire Fire Service:

Leader calls for fuel comments to be retracted

York's Council Leader has called on Cabinet Minister Francis Maude to retract his comments on filling jerry cans with fuel and storing them, after a York woman was badly burned decanting petrol in her home.

The woman, who lives in the Acomb district of York, suffered 40% burns to her body after petrol was ignited in her kitchen. 

Council Leader Coun. James Alexander said:

"I have today written to Francis Maude to ask him to retract his comments. 

"By encouraging people to store jerry cans of fuel he is being hugely irresponsible and increasing the risk to public health from this activity.

"This is an incredibly sad incident and I'm sure the woman involved is receiving the best treatment possible, so I wish her a speedy recovery.

"The Minister must accept that while his comments cannot be directly linked to this incident, they could very easily have contributed to it or to the potential for other similar incidents to happen elsewhere in the country.

"What is needed is a Government that tries to resolve the issue with the tanker drivers' representatives quickly to avert strike action in the future, rather than one that makes ill-judged and potentially dangerous interventions like Francis Maude has done.

"I hope the risk to public health is sufficient for him to reflect on and retract his comments swiftly".

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