A National Petroleum Authority (NPA) interim report has found, the October 7 gas explosion happened after a driver's mate with no training in handling LPG was given the task of discharging the highly inflammable substance at a station.

The driver's mate took to his heels after he failed to stop the gas from leaking at the gas station at Madina Atomic Junction in Accra.

It was a failure that allowed the gas to spread in search of an unconfirmed ignition source leading to a tragic explosion that has left seven dead in Ghana's eighth gas explosion in the past three years.

Atomic Junction explosion

Photo: Site of the October 7 gas explosion

The 8-page preliminary report was read out by veteran journalist Kweku Baako on Newsfile on Joy News channel on Multi TV.

The contents were corroborated by NPA Chief Executive Hassan Tampuli who was called into the show to make a submission.

He further explained that a driver with the LPG Truck Drivers and Installers Association parked the gas tanker at the Atomic Junction premises of the gas station.

For reasons yet to be explained, the driver "moved away and left the exercise [of discharging the gas] in hands of the mate."

After encountering challenges with the discharge, the mate whose name is undisclosed, "immediately took to his wheels".

He was screaming and urging others to run. Pregnant women were seen escaping the flame together with several scores of alarmed residents and commuters.

Hassan Tampuli said the gas-charging truck was not among the recognised Oil Marketing Companies.

Hence, the gas station went against the standard operating procedure by engaging a third party without special clearance from the NPA.

The revelations could fuel further calls for the operators of the gas station to be sued in the wake of accusations of negligence.

 

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