General News of Monday, 9 October 2017
The Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) has identified the use of ‘manual valves’ in discharging liquefied petroleum gas from a tanker truck into a storage tank as the possible cause of last Saturday’s gas explosion at Atomic Junction.
It said in a statement Monday, that its findings into the possible cause of the explosions that left seven people dead and 132 injured, points to the absence of a proper dislodge device [suction pumps] at the station.
A gas leak from one of two gas fuel stations within the Atomic Junction enclave reportedly sparked fire, which extended to an adjoining Total Filling Station causing two explosions that sent fireballs into the skies last Saturday.
Hundreds of passengers, traders and residents in and around the Atomic Junction area fled their homes and workplaces for safety as two explosions lit the skies and caused severe heat waves Saturday night.
According to the Chamber, the absence of such device caused the tanker driver to use “a rather dangerous mechanical process of dislodging the products using manual valves on the engine of the BRV [gas tanker truck]”.
It observed that there were other gas fuel stations in the country which do not have suction pumps for dislodging LPG, noting such stations have very little regard for standard operating procedures.