A South West man has been fined $3000 for having a moment of “catastrophically bad judgement” after lighting spilled fuel on fire at a petrol station.
Keith Raymond Gorman appeared in Bunbury Magistrate’s Court on Monday, where he was sentenced on a charge of committing an act that would endanger the life, health or safety of another person.
The court was told Gorman parked his car near fuel pumps at the United Petroleum Mt Barker Roadhouse during the evening of May 25 and made a phone call.
While on the phone, another person parked their car nearby and filled a jerrycan with fuel but tipped out a small amount of excess fuel on to the ground.
After Gorman finished his phone call, he noticed the liquid and used a lighter to ignite the liquid, sparking flames up to two metres high while he moved his car away.
Employees at the Roadhouse quickly engaged the killswitch, shutting down power to all fuel pumps.
The court was told the flames lasted 90 seconds and little damage was sustained.
In submissions, Gorman’s defence counsel Twistie Venning told the court his client returned to the roadhouse the next day and left his details with employees. He was eventually summonsed by police.
Mr Venning said his client acknowledged lighting the excess fuel was an “extremely foolish decision” and submitted Gorman had “self-reduced” his ADHD medication in a bid to reduce his reliance on it.
In sentencing, Magistrate Benjamin Tyers acknowledged Gorman’s offending was “ill-conceived” rather than a deliberate act.
Along with the $3000 fine, Gorman was ordered to pay court costs.
Extracted in full from: South West man Keith Raymond Gorman fined $3000 for setting fuel on fire at roadhouse | The West Australian