Three workers injured in explosion at chemical factory

The damage: The factory at Attibele on the outskirts of Bengaluru where the blast occurred on Friday.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Three workers were injured when a solvent vessel exploded accidentally within the premises of a chemical factory in Attibele Industrial Area on Friday. The blast resulted in a chemical leak which in turn released a pungent odour within a radius of several hundred metres. The incident comes after two fire accidents in the city in the last four days.

The blast occurred at Lake Chemicals Pvt. Ltd., a pharmaceutical-related plant, at around 1.05 p.m. “Eight workers were at the spot when the solvent vessel burst, splattering chemicals around. Two workers sustained significant injuries, while another person sustained minor injuries,” said Mallesh, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Bengaluru Rural. The injured have been identified as Gnanavelu, 22, and Mune Gowda, 30, who, according to sources, suffered significant burns — up to 30%. A third worker, Suryanath, 27, escaped with minor injuries. The injured are being treated at a private hospital nearby and are said to be out of danger.

“When we reached the spot, the injured had already been shifted to hospitals but there was a fire raging, which we put out using two fire tenders,” said P.M. Nagesh, District Fire Officer, who led the operation at the factory. “The vessel was about eight feet high and eight feet wide. It had chemicals such as toluene, methanol, and hydrochloric acid. While we don’t yet know the exact reason for the blast, unregulated pressure or temperature may have led to an adverse reaction and blast,” he said.

An angry resident told mediapersons that they had been demanding that the factory be relocated as it emanates a foul smell, which has affected their quality of life. “Not only is there a foul smell every day, but it also causes irritation in our nose and throat,” he said, alleging that a similar accident had occurred a while back.

When contacted, sources in the Fire and Emergency Services said a minor fire accident had occurred at the factory 14 years ago and some workers were injured, but no fatalities were recorded.

The Attibele police have registered a case against the owners and management of Lake Chemicals under Section 337 of Indian Penal Code for “causing hurt to any person by doing any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger human life, or the personal safety of others”.

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Printable version | Oct 27, 2021 5:06:29 PM |

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