At a media briefing, Director of Sales and Marketing of Litro Gas Lanka, Janaka Pathirathna said people using soap water to test for liquefied petroleum gas leakages poses certain dangers.
“The cylinder must remain sealed once it is brought home. The regulator must be fixed soon after the seal is removed. If not, the safety cap must be kept on.”
He urged the general public not to try to open the gas valve and use soap water or insert any sticks into the valve.
Pathirathna requested them to place the safety cap on and call the company’s hotline 1311, if they are having any suspicions regarding a leaking cylinder.
The officials of Litro Gas Lanka who visited the sites where explosions were reported previously have observed that gas leaked from the cylinder hose or the regulator, according to Pathirathna. “We observed a regulator that was more than 15 years old,” he said adding that two of the most recent incidents reported were due to gas leakage that occurred as a result of putting soap water into the valve of a cylinder that had been used for over one and a half months without any issue.
Speaking further at the media briefing, Pathirathna clarified questions on changing the composition of LP gas. Quoting an expert, he said changing the propane-butane ratio does not cause cylinders to explode even if the valve is removed.
The atmospheric pressure is essential and the composition is not at fault, Pathirathna stressed. “We follow the SLS 720 Standard. The standard pressure valve is around 1,000 bars. The pressure does not build up through the changing of the gas composition.”
The pressure level is around 700 bars if the gas composition is 100 percent propane and it will not exceed the standardised pressure levels according to SLS Standards, he continued. “The cylinder can bear five times of the pressure created by this gas composition.”
When asked about the laboratory report provided by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation which concluded that the 12.5 kg gas cylinder has a 50-50 ratio of propane and butane, Pathirathna said the company is yet to receive the document. – ada derana