Overfilling of gas cylinder likely cause cabinet heater fire

Energy type: 
LPG
 
Event summary: 
The Fire Service notified Energy Safety of a cabinet heater which had caught fire when the occupant tried to light it. The occupant suffered burns to his hands and face when moving the heater out of the building and was taken to hospital. The heater was destroyed in the fire.
 
Accident ID: 
170623-04
 
Accident date: 
22 June 2017
 
Site: 
Domestic
 
Environment: 
Building
 
Voltage: 
1
 
Equipment: 
Space heater cabinet heater
 
Accident type: 
Fire and explosion
 
Casualty: 
Non-fatality
 
Injury: 
Burn
 
Property damage level: 
Restricted to the direct vicinity of the equipment
 
Outcome of investigation: 

The LPG cylinder for the cabinet heater had been filled on the morning of the accident. The owner had noticed the cylinder was leaking through the back-check module and the hand wheel was not closed. When the cylinder was connected to the heater and the owner tried to light it, the heater burst into four foot flames from the front of the heater.

The leaking back-check module and the large amount of flame from the front of the heater on ignition are indicators that the cylinder had been overfilled and liquid LPG was finding its way to the burners. (Most cabinet heater fires are leaks at the cylinder/regulator interface and occur at the back of the heater).

The over filling was referred to the WorkSafe Response team.