Ghana’s solid policies to soon address gas explosions

An explosion occurs at a fuel station in north Accra, capital of Ghana, Oct. 7, 2017. The explosion happening late Saturday left at least two people dead. (Xinhua/Shi Song) (yk)

Ghanaian President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Monday said the government would soon introduce solid policies to deal with gas explosions in the country.

The decision follows the death of seven people in a gas explosion at a filling station in the capital city Accra Saturday night.
The explosion was due to a leak from a truck that was discharging liquefied petroleum gas at a filling station, according to eyewitnesses.

When the truck driver realized there was a leak, he immediately alerted people around who started running before the resounding double explosion sent fire balls into the sky, they said.

More than 20 vehicles were also reported to have been burnt by the explosion which happened at a busy road close to a senior high school, students’ hostels and restaurants.

“This thing has to do with the policies that we have to put in place so that such things don’t occur again. I feel very strongly about this. It can’t continue,” Akufo-Addo said after visiting the scene of the incident Monday afternoon.

The Ghanaian cabinet will meet on Thursday and is expected to formulate a comprehensive program intended to bring such incidents to a stop.

The avoidable tragedy of October 7 is not the first but one of many that has once again claimed lives and injured the health of many taxpayers, destroyed businesses so unrelated to the sale or distributions of petroleum products, temporarily displaced people from their homes, and left people with noticeable blemishes.

Ghana has since 2014 recorded at least eight major gas explosions across the country that have killed more than 200 people.
An energy policy think tank, Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP), has called for an independent consulting firm to undertake forensic examination of the regulatory regime.

It said Ghana needed to find a fix for the institutional weaknesses that endangered citizens’ lives by commissioning an independent examination of the regulatory regime

It also called for stiffer sanctions to be applied to owners of petroleum products stations who violate safety standards.
“The sanctions must include possible incarceration of the owners of the service stations if negligence can be attributed to them,” said the statement issued by Benjamin Boakye, Executive Director of the think tank. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/

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