2 workers burned in Newburyport construction accident

Employees for Midway Construction, a contractor for National Grid, were welding in a trench near a gas line on Park Street when a flash fire burned two workers, according to police.

“One of the officers on duty for the road detail heard somebody screaming and when he looked over saw the fire about eight feet up in the air,” said Newburyport Fire Lt. Steve Hamilton. “And then saw someone fidgeting in the trench trying to get out.”

Residual gas in the trench lit, causing the fire, according to fire officials at the scene.

One of the workers, a private contractor, was taken to a local hospital with severe burns to his face, according to fire officials.

The other worker, a National Grid employee, helped the contractor out of the trench and was taken to a local hospital with minor injuries, according to fire officials.

“He was a National Grid employee, as we were told, and was able to get the other person out of the trench while trench was on fire,” Hamilton said.

Investigators for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were investigating the incident.

There are no public safety issues resulting from the accident, according to police.

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