Energy Safety examines EPOD following fire fatality

Energy type: 
Electricity
 
Event summary: 
The Fire Service notified Energy Safety of a fatal fire. Although the cause was suspected as being non-electrical, the remains of a portable power board (EPOD) were recovered for examination. Energy Safety was asked to examine the remains and to provide an expert opinion as to whether this may be evidence of an electrically caused fire, instead of the other non‑electrical cause originally considered by the Fire Service to be more likely. The fatal injuries were burns caused by the fire and smoke
 
Accident ID: 
160923-06
 
Accident date: 
11 September 2016
 
Site: 
Domestic
 
Environment: 
Building
 
Voltage: 
230
 
Equipment: 
Room Heaters; Fan heaters; Radiant Heaters; Oil Fin
 
Accident type: 
Fire
 
Casualty: 
Fatality
 
Injury: 
Burn, Asphyxiation
 
Property damage level: 
Extended to multiple rooms
 
Outcome of investigation: 

Energy Safety examined the remains of a portable four socket‑outlet power board (EPOD). Although there was evidence of contact damage, the damage was consistent with the short circuit in a supply cord or appliance plugged into the EPOD, not a fault within the EPOD itself.

Also the likely point of fire origin was not where the EPOD remains were found. On the basis of information provided by the investigating Fire Officer, the likely cause of the fire was an accidentally knocked over electric heater The unidentified portable electric heater was reported to be old and was not provided to Energy Safety for examination.