Despite efforts to curb misuse of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in the country, it has emerged that most gas consumers in the western region do not adhere to the safety precautions associated with its usage.
Malpractices ranging from stones placed on cylinders, gas cylinders placed next to coal pots, leak of LPG from damaged rubber tube, incorrect fixing of the regulator, damaged O-Ring in the cylinder valve and rusty cylinders among others were seen particularly at tea stalls, roadside eateries, chop bars, restaurants and hotels.
A team from the Corporate Affairs Division of the National Petroleum Authority who are currently in the region engaging gas consumers announced this at the second phase of the nationwide LPG Door to Door campaign in the Sekondi/Takoradi municipality.
Speaking during the exercise, Benjamin Sekyere Owusu, Communications Officer of the NPA, said LPG was an excellent fuel for cooking and it was safe if used correctly.
He however said, “if stored or used incorrectly, LPG can be extremely dangerous. When safety is compromised accident is born which can cause serious injury or even death…
“A single mistake in the kitchen can be fatal, so be careful! You can be roasted alive” he stressed.
Mr Owusu said most fire accidents happened because of negligence: “People fail to notice leaks, do not change the hose periodically, do not turn off the valve etc. Yes, sometimes faulty cylinders are delivered, which is why we need to be alert and be caretakers of our own safety.”
He admonished the consumers to preferably locate their gas cylinders outdoors, adding that, “the idea to have the gas cylinder outside the kitchen and connected by long hose to the stove or burner is a very good idea.”
The team had already visited several eateries in the Takoradi, Sekondi, Effiekuma, Tarkwa and Apemanim areas, where vendors were educated on the appropriate use of LPG cylinders at their business centres and homes.
The sensitization exercise is part of a policy programme by the Authority to ensure the previous spate of LPG related accidents including explosions and fire outbreaks in the parts of the country, are not repeated.