Fines totalling NOK 25m ($2.96m) relating to the June 2019 incident at a Kjørbo, Norway hydrogen station have been received by an entity partially owned by Nel ASA and a Nel subsidiary, the Norwegian hydrogen company confirmed on Tuesday (16th Feb).
An assembly error of a specific plug in a hydrogen tank in the high-pressure storage unit was identified as the root cause of the 10th June, 2019, explosion of the station, located just outside of Oslo.
Nel investigated the incident with safety consultancy Gexcon at the time and the preliminary investigation showed that the incident started with a hydrogen leak from a plug in one of the tanks in the high-pressure storage unit.
This leak created a mixture of hydrogen and air that ignited.
“Nel has today received notice of a fine of NOK 15m ($1.77m) for a fully owned Nel subsidiary and has been informed that a company partially owned by Nel has been fined NOK 10m ($1.18m), a portion of which Nel may be liable for,” Nel said in a statement Tuesday.
“Nel will assess the notice and evaluate a response and potential further actions.”
Jon André Løkke, CEO of Nel, commented, “Nel conducted a thorough investigation of the incident in 2019 and has cooperated closely with the local authorities.”
“We’re surprised by the conclusion and the size of the fines and will evaluate further potential actions.”