Shell apologises for Bacton gas terminal blast

Energy giant Shell UK has today publicly apologised for the serious failings which led to a massive explosion at its Bacton gas terminal.

The hearing at Norwich Crown Court has heard how the blast in February 2008 could have killed as many as 10 people, had it happened at a different time.

Fortunately the blast happened when workers were swapping over with night-shift teams.

Shell Uk has admitted seven breaches of health and safety and environmental regulations following the explosion and subsequent fire.

In mitigation the company said it took full responsibility for what happened and very much regretted the failings which led to the explosion.

Tobias Riley-Smith told the court that he had been asked to publically say on behalf of the directors and senior management how 'very sorry' the company was. He said: The company is committed to protect the health and safety of its workers and conducts its business in an environmentally responsible way. It is therefore a matter of particular regret and shame that the company finds itself in court.'

He said that Shell did not want him to make excuses for what happened but to explain what happened.'The company accepts that mistakes have been made.'

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The hearing is continuing and sentencing is expected to take place on Monday.

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