AN INQUIRY has been launched after a scaffolder working at Fawley refinery fell 30ft through the roof of a disused building. 

The 33-year-old casualty landed on a concrete floor and was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital, where he is being treated for serious injuries.

Police were called to the 3,250-acre refinery following the incident and an investigation has been launched by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

The injured man is understood to be an employee of Cape plc - one of the contractors that support the operation of the huge petro-chemical complex. 

A refinery spokesman said the accident occurred last Saturday at about 8am.

She added: "He was treated at the scene and transferred to hospital by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance.

"Hampshire Constabulary also attended the incident.

"The Health and Safety Executive has been informed and an investigation has been launched.

"Our thoughts are with our colleague and his family."

A South Central Ambulance Service spokesman confirmed that the man, who has not been named, fell about 30ft.

He added: "We sent a rapid response vehicle, an ambulance, one of our officers, the fire service co-responder from Hythe and the air ambulance to the scene.

"The patient was a 33-year-old male who had fallen through the roof of a disused building on to a concrete floor.

"He had fallen from a height of around ten metres and landed on his left side, sustaining serious injuries to his left arm, left leg and pelvis.

"He was treated at the scene by the air ambulance team before being flown to Southampton General Hospital."

Hampshire Police confirmed that officers received reports of a man falling from scaffolding at the refinery but said the investigation was being headed by the HSE. 

An HSE spokesman said it was aware of the incident and had sent one of its inspectors to examine the scene of the accident.

The refinery, the largest in the UK and one of the most complex in Europe, processes about 270,000 barrels of crude oil a day.

Its mile-long marine terminal handles about 2,000 ship movements and 22 million tonnes of crude oil and other products every year.

A Cape plc spokesman was unavailable for comment.

Its website says the Middlesex-based company provides a wide range of essential on-site services to help clients achieve internationally-recognised safety standards.