Row of homes still in ru­ins af­ter ex­plo­sion

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Repton Manor Barn -

The fate of a build­ing that was gut­ted by a sus­pected gas ex­plo­sion is still un­known more than three months af­ter the dis­as­ter.

A blast and sub­se­quent fire­ball de­stroyed a row of homes in Oak Tree Road, South Ash­ford, in June this year, leav­ing 10 peo­ple home­less.

One res­i­dent, a man in his 20s, was rushed to a spe­cial­ist burns unit in Lon­don with se­ri­ous in­juries

The Heath and Safety Ex­ec­u­tive (HSE) be­gan an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the cause of the ex­plo­sion shortly af­ter it hap­pened, which a spokesman said is still ‘on­go­ing.’

An Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil spokesman said their teams are un­able to de­ter­mine whether the build­ing will have to be de­mol­ished un­til the HSE wraps up its in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

He said: “We are still wait­ing on HSE re­gard­ing the cause and the struc­tural sur­vey work, which will be un­der­taken in due course.”

The coun­cil held an in­ter­nal re­view meet­ing last Fri­day for of­fi­cers in­volved in the au­thor­ity’s re­sponse to the cri­sis.

The spokesman added: “Fol­low­ing such in­ci­dents it is nor­mal prac­tice for us to re­flect on the way we re­sponded, to iden­tify what worked well and what can be im­proved upon.

“We will then amend pro­cesses ac­cord­ingly to re­as­sure res­i­dents that we are fully pre­pared and have ro­bust plans in place.”

Af­ter­math of the ex­plo­sion in Oak Tree Road

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