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Posted at: Jan 14, 2018, 2:18 AM; last updated: Jan 14, 2018, 2:18 AM (IST)

17 hurt in fire at gas agency

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 13

Seventeen persons were injured in a fire caused by a series of blasts at Mahajan Indian Gas Workshop, Mubarakpur, here this morning.

The agency, situated in Sekhon village and falling under the Maqsudan police station, houses hundreds of cylinders.

At 10.15 am, 17 workers were shocked by a blow-out which engulfed the entire premises. The incident took place when the work to paint the cylinders lying in the agency was on. Sources expressed apprehensions that due to carelessness, the gas or chemicals emitted during the paint job, might have caught fire, resulting in the blasts.

While four fire tenders were rushed to the spot, the department officials said until then, the fire had almost died out, except a few flames emanating from some of the cylinders and a tree near the premises which had caught fire. Seventeen persons on job on the premises were engulfed in the sudden fire, with many of them sustaining 60 to 80 per cent burn injuries.

The injured workers were admitted to various government and private hospitals in the district. Sources said there was no major material loss to the workshop.

Bhim Bahadur (35), a worker who sustained 65 per cent burns while working at the workshop and admitted to the Civil Hospital here today, said, “The fire was so sudden that we did not even get time to react. It came a like a wave and we didn’t even get a chance to run. Before we knew, I and my fellow workers’ clothes were on fire. We tried to flee the premises, but before we could do so, the harm had been done. Finally, some persons hearing the blasts came to the premises and brought us to the hospital.”

Lying alone on a hospital bed at the local Civil Hospital, Bhim, whose back, legs and arms and part of the face, have been charred in the incident, did not have any relatives to attend to him because his wife and children are in Bihar. He is the sole bread winner of his family. He expressed the hope that he would survive the incident so that he could see his kids again.

Special fire officer Rajinder Singh said, “The emission of some gases during the paint job seem to have triggered the fire. It might have been caused due to someone carelessly flipping a switch. The exact cause hasn’t yet been ascertained. There are no major losses to the workshop. The fire had almost died by the time the vehicles reached the spot.”


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