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Atomic gas explosion report ready, details kept under wraps

Preliminary investigations into the gas explosions that hit two fuel stations at Atomic Junction in Accra last Saturday has concluded, the Ghana National Fire Service has said.

A report on the investigations covering among others, the cause of the explosions, will today October 13 be presented to the Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery, behind closed doors.

An aerial view of the enclave where two of three fuel stations exploded and caught fire Saturday night

A gas leak from one of two gas fuel stations within the Atomic Junction enclave reportedly sparked explosions and fire, which extended to adjoining Total Filling Station sent fireballs into the skies.

Huge fireballs erupted into the skies due to the explosions and sent heatwaves in around the area.

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 on October 7, 2017.

Seven people have so far died as a result of the disaster and 132 others injured, of which some are still on admission receiving treatment.

‘Kyinkyinga’ theory

There have been various theories about the possible cause(s) of the gas explosion, which is said to be the eighth major one in the country in the last three years.

While some have blamed a grilled meat (kyinkyinga) seller near the gas station for the incident, others have been pointing fingers at operators of the station and the gas tanker which was dislodging gas at the time.

The report, to be presented to the Interior Minister Friday is expected to settle the issue of what caused the fire, which has become one of the key issues that has dominated discussions in the aftermath of the disaster.

Deputy Public Relations Officer, Prince Billy Anaglate confirmed to 3News Friday morning that the “preliminary report” on the incident is ready and would be presented to the Interior Minister but declined to give details.

On Thursday, government announced nine measures to be taken by various stakeholders in the industry with the view to ending the numerous incidences of fuel explosions in the country.

Among other things, President Nana Akufo-Addo has directed that construction of facilities intended for use as gas or petroleum retail stations must be stopped with immediate effect.

Also, high risk LPG stations should be closed down immediately, in accordance with relevant law “without regard to any political or special interests”.

By Stephen Kwabena Effah|3news.com|Ghana

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