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When we say “gas can,” we think of the red plastic cans that we keep in garages and sheds, but we can also mean yellow diesel cans or blue kerosene cans. Most people don’t realize these fuel containers can explode like bombs. This usually results in life-changing injury or death.

Why do cans explode?

For years, the manufacturers of these cans have known that people are being hurt and killed when these plastic fuel containers explode. What the manufacturers know, and most people don’t, is that fuel vapors are heavier than air. Vapors can escape the container and create a “vapor trail.” If a spark, flame, or other heat source ignites the vapor trail, the flame can trace back along that vapor trail and go back into the fuel container like a fuse to a bomb.

What could the manufacturer have done to stop it?

The simple and effective fix to this known danger is to insert a mesh metal screen – often called a flame arrestor or spark arrestor –  into the openings of the container. The metal screen does not allow flame to pass through it, keeping the contents of the fuel container safe from explosion. This technology has been in use since 1815, when miners would use mesh metal screens to keep their lamps from igniting explosive gasses deep in the earth. Flame arrestors have been employed in various fuel containers since the late 1800s, and OSHA requires that construction and industrial sites have flame arrestors  in all gasoline, diesel, and kerosene containers.

Am I entitled to compensation for my injury?

If you or a loved one has been burned by an exploding fuel container, please call us for a free case evaluation. Many of those hurt in fuel container explosions do not call because they blame themselves for their injuries, but remember: the fuel container industry has known about this danger for decades and the technology to fix it has existed for centuries, while the average person is unaware of the danger. Call now for your free case evaluation.