Ellerslie explosion hospitalises one
An explosion in the Auckland suburb of Ellerslie left one worker with burn injuries.
Emergency services responded to the explosion in Ladies Mile just after 1pm on Thursday.
A Watercare worker investigating a wastewater pipe received minor burns to his face and arms, a spokeswoman for the council-controlled organisation said.
The incident occurred when Watercare workers were breaking open concrete surrounding a pipeline and struck a live electrical cable, creating a flash, she said.
The man was part of a small crew and was discharged from Middlemore Hospital Thursday afternoon, she said.
A pipe blocked by tree roots was being repaired and the team were hand-digging the area at the time, she said.
Watercare infrastructure delivery manager Steve Webster said police originally believed the explosion occurred underground, but the crew were not underground at the time.
‘‘They were working in a shallow excavation in the berm when the incident occurred.’’
Worksafe had been notified and Watercare was investigating the cause of the accident, he said.
Police senior sergeant Daniel Meade said a digger was involved and damage was caused to assets owned by power company Vector. on
Workers struck a live electrical cable in a ‘‘shallow excavation’’, creating a flash, Watercare said.