Over 1800 fire incidents in 2-yrs
Golam Mostafa Jibon: Fire incidents are increasing day by day across the country due to use of low quality cylinders and lack of their retest.
Lack of awareness and proper monitoring by the authorities concerned is the main reason behind the fatal explosions and claim of lives.
Sources said, there are over 1,800 fire accidents, which took place in the last two years due to supply of gas in substandard cylinders. At least 40 people lost their lives in these accidents.
Experts said that, it will not be possible to bring such accidents under control, if the quality of the cylinders is not tested quickly.
According to the fire service, there were 818 LPG cylinder explosions in 2019. Some 25 people lost their lives and 69 people were injured in these accidents. The financial loss was estimated over Tk 12 crore.
The following year in 2020, the number of accidents increased to 957. At least 10 people lost their lives and 107 people were injured in the accidents. The financial loss in this connection was estimated at about Tk 4 crore. Last year, there were a total of 21,073 fire incidents across the country. Of them, 3,564 were originated from electric short circuit, gas and earthen stoves. This is 16.91 percent of the total fire. Most of these fires were caused by the use of low quality gas stoves. At least two LPG cylinders were exploded recently in which five people claimed their lives. Some 10 more people were injured.
On an average, there are three explosions every day somewhere in the country.
In most cases, these explosions happen in the kitchen. Apart from this, the use of LPG cylinders in vehicles is also causing deadly fires.
Deputy Director of Fire Service (Dhaka) Debashish Vardhan was the head of the committee formed to probe the explosion incident occurred at Gazipur from gas cylinder.
He told The Daily Industry that, we came to know that the cylinder that was being used in the house was brought just one day before the accident. The regulator on the cylinder was broken. Gas was coming out from there. The tenants of the house informed the cylinder suppliers about the matter. But the suppliers could not come that day as it was night. After finding no way, the mouth of the cylinder was tied with a towel. But the gas kept coming out from there all night.
He further said, the use of LPG has increased in the country. But most of the cylinders in which the gas is being supplied are worthless. It is not advisable to use these cylinders without proper quality testing. Even the smallest parts used in the cylinder need to be used with caution.
In many cases, gas suppliers use substandard regulators and pipes in cylinders to save money. As a result, such unintended accidents are happening.
According to the concerned, the normal life of a gas cylinder is 15 years. But, LPG is also being marketed with a 26-year-old cylinder.
Accidents and deaths are increasing mainly due to gas marketing in these expired cylinders.
At present, the private sector controls 80 percent of the LP gas market. Several companies are marketing LP gas in cylinders after importing it by sea. But, there are massive irregularities in the supply and maintenance of these gas-filled cylinders in the market, sources claimed.