New Ferry explosion claims liability hearing set for 2024/5

The latest hearing on the New Ferry Gas Explosion claims took place at Liverpool High Court on 4 July 2023, having been adjourned previously.

The New Ferry gas explosion took place on 25 March 2017 and a Mr Paul Blasio was found guilty of causing the explosion in October 2019 and sentenced to 19 years in prison for causing an explosion likely to endanger life and fraud in relation to an insurance claim submitted to his insurers, NFU Mutual, following the explosion.

At a previous hearing Contract Natural Gas (CNG), pleaded guilty to an offence under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and were fined £320,000.

A total of 65 Claimants are now pursuing CNG and Cadent Gas for compensation as a result of the explosion.

A previous hearing was listed for 25 April 2023 in the High Court in Livepool, however, this did not go ahead due to the unavailability of the Judge hearing the claims. The matter was re-listed for a hearing on 4 July 2023.

At the hearing, His Honour Judge Wood gave permission to an additional claimant “Jomaro” to join the proceedings and they bring a claim for property damage. They will now join the other 65 claimants bringing injury and damage claims.

HHJ Wood went on to give the parties directions as to how the claims are to proceed and he agreed that the matters should be dealt with on a “split-trial” basis meaning that the issue of liability will be dealt with first.

Alisha Butler or Phoenix Solicitors, Birkenhead, commented, “This is an important decision in how the proceedings are to continue. Having liability dealt with as a preliminary matter is significant for the claimants involved as it will allow the parties to focus on proving who is liable, if anyone, to those Claimants bringing claims.

“A significant number of our clients still suffer, 6 years on, with psychological damage as a result of the explosion and still require counselling as a result.

“We would like to get liability resolved as quickly as possible so that our clients can move on with their lives and the community can move forward with rebuilding the area. The explosion took its toll on the area and significant investment is now required to help rebuild the area.”

The trial window has been listed from 1 October 2024 and will run until 20 April 2025, with a likely 10 days being required to hear all of the evidence.

Between now and then there are a number of directions that have been given by the Court to assist the parties in moving the claims along and to assist the Court in determining liability. One of which is for the parties to obtain expert evidence in the areas of gas industry standards and regulation and risk management and safety in the gas industry.

Once those reports are obtained the Claimants and the Defendants experts will meet to discuss what issue can be agreed between them and what issues will be open for the Court to decide.

In the meantime, all parties are able to make offers to settle the claims or to narrow the issues that the court needs to determine at any Trial.

As the Court will only be required to determine liability at the Trial, the Claimants will not be required to give evidence of the events that night or the impact the explosion has had on them. This will all be dealt with after liability has been decided by the Court.

Image: The scene of the explosion in July 2018. Credit: GOOGLE

Why not follow on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter? You can also send story ideas to

Share this

Subscribe to our FREE newsletter

Facebook comments

Latest news