Brewing operations could restart at Carlsberg in Northampton tomorrow, the firm says, as investigations into the fatal accident continue.
The plant shut down beer production following the incident at the St Peter’s Way site on November 9, when a leak of ammonia lead to around 28 people needing treatment, and led to the death of David Chandler, aged 45 and from Shropshire.
Julian Momen, chief executive of Carlsberg UK, said: “Many people, outside and inside our business, have been profoundly affected by the recent incident at our brewery and we will continue to support them as best we can over the coming weeks and months. Our thoughts in particular remain with the family and friends of those directly impacted.
“We continue to help our colleagues and our top priority remains the importance of safety for all our staff, across all our sites.
“The investigation into what happened is being led by the authorities and has our full cooperation.
“The initial on-site enquiry work has now been concluded, meaning we have been able to make good progress against our site recovery plan, and our production teams have been able to return back on site.
“Subsequently, we have been packaging beer on site since the weekend and we anticipate that some brewing will re-commence tomorrow.
“During this period, when we will not be at our optimum production levels, we will continue to source some beer from other Carlsberg breweries for the UK market.
“This has been a very difficult time for everyone concerned, and I speak on behalf of everyone working at Carlsberg UK, when I say that we truly appreciate all of the support we have received from the industry, our customers and the local community.”
Carlsberg has released the following summary and update to the incident and investigation.
– On 9 November at 12.31pm, there was a serious safety incident within our brewery on Bridge Street, Northampton, concerning an ammonia gas release.
– We are deeply saddened to confirm that there was one fatality as a result of the incident. Police have confirmed the deceased as David Chandler, who was aged 45, from Bridgnorth in Shropshire. David was engaged on site as a contractor at the time of the tragic incident. A post mortem examination was carried out at Leicester Royal Infirmary and the cause of death was given as inhalation of ammonia. The thoughts of everyone at Carlsberg UK are with David’s family, friends, employer and colleagues at this very difficult time.
– The police have also confirmed that one individual who was in critical condition is improving and remains in hospital.
– A further 10 individuals working on site, and a further 11 members of the emergency services, were also taken to hospital and subsequently released.
– The wider investigation of the incident by the authorities remains ongoing, and they have our full support and cooperation.
– The initial on-site enquiry work has been concluded and our production teams have been able to return back on site. As such, we have made good progress with the implementation of our phased and controlled site recovery plan. The packaging of beer on site resumed over the weekend and we anticipate that some brewing will re-commence tomorrow. Although we are not yet at our optimum level, we are progressing in line with our recovery plan.
– During this period, when we will not be at our optimum production levels, we will continue to source some beer from other Carlsberg breweries for UK market.