Bosley Mill explosion: Company charged with corporate manslaughter

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Will Barks, Derek Moore, Jason Shingler and Dorothy Bailey all died in the explosion

A company and its management are facing charges over the deaths of four people in an explosion at a wood flour mill.

Derek Moore, Dorothy Bailey, Jason Shingler and William Barks were employees at Wood Flour Mills in Bosley, Cheshire, when they died in July 2015.

Owners Wood Treatment Ltd has now been charged with corporate manslaughter.

Director George Boden is accused of manslaughter by gross negligence and two managers also face charges.

A four-storey building was destroyed in the blast and large fires broke out at the mill on Tunstall Road shortly after 09:00 BST on 17 July.

At the time, a firefighter described the aftermath of the explosion as "a scene of devastation".

Image caption,
A four-storey building collapsed in the explosion
Image source, Other
Image caption,
Fires at the site continued to burn for weeks after the explosion

Crews did not leave the site until more than a month after the explosion, which reduced the mill to rubble and left a number of other employees injured, as fires continued to burn.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said the charges were the result of a "lengthy and complex" investigation by Cheshire Police and the Health and Safety Executive.

Image source, News helicopter
Image caption,
A number of other employees were also injured in the explosion

Mr Boden, from Stockport, will face four charges of manslaughter by gross negligence and one health and safety offence when he appears at Stockport Magistrates' Court on 2 December.

Managers Philip Smith, from Macclesfield, and Peter Shingler, from Bosley, will appear alongside him charged with health and safety offences.

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