Man suffers ‘severe burns’ after oil tank explodes
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A man has suffered severe burns to his hands and arms after an oil tank exploded in front of him in an Essex village.
Firefighters were called to School Road, Little Maplestead, at around 10.13am yesterday, to reports of a blaze.
Bosses say the homeowner was cutting up a steel oil tank - which he thought was empty - when the angle grinder he was using created a spark, igniting oil in the bottom of the tank.
This then exploded into flames and the man's clothing caught fire.
"Thankfully the man was able to quickly remove his overalls and therefore stop the fire catching to his body, although his hands and arms have suffered severe burns.
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"As well as extinguishing the fire within the oil tanker with foam and dry powder we were able to give the casualty first aid and care for him until the ambulance service arrived.
"Our advice would be to always ensure that oil tanks are fully drained before cutting them up - but to be extra safe, use a specialist oil tank replacement company to recycle your old tank."
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Crews from Sible Hedingham and Halstead managed to put out the fire by 11am.
Chiefs say the back of the house has suffered some heat damage.