Andhra Pradesh

TN engineer dies in gas leak at KIA cars factory in Anantapur

KIA Motors India manufacturing facility at Erramanchi village in Anantapur district, where a gas leak killed one engineer and another employee was taken ill on Thursday.

KIA Motors India manufacturing facility at Erramanchi village in Anantapur district, where a gas leak killed one engineer and another employee was taken ill on Thursday. | Photo Credit: PRASAD RVS

A mechanical engineer died and another contract employee fell ill on the wastewater treatment plant (WTP) premises of KIA Motors India cars manufacturing facility due to a methane gas leak on Thursday in Anantapur district.

While the permitted levels were 10 ppm for Hydrogen Sulphide, the levels at the spot were 140 ppm and methane was 50 to 60 ppm.

The KIA India has given the operation and maintenance contract of the WTP to Hyundai Engineering Company. The KIA India has two other water treatment plants for raw water and process water (from manufacturing plant). The deceased, 32-year-old engineer Sankarpandian Ayyapan, hailing from Villupuram in Tamil Nadu, was a mechanical engineer with Hyundai Engineering Company

The victim was on night duty and went into a closed room housing the sludge sump to check water levels after switching on a motor outside and inhaled high levels of the methane and hydrogen sulphide at 1.30 a.m., said Deputy Chief Inspector of Factories D. Radha Krishna.

“From the CCTV footage we gather he might have died around 1.45 am and contract employee Sashavali, 33, went inside at 6 am, keeping the door of the room open, which saved his life as he came to consciousness with water overflowing from the sludge tank touching him,” he added.

Both were taken to Penukonda Government hospital, where Ayyappan was declared dead and Sashavali was taken to a private hospital in Anantapur and later shifted to a Bengaluru hospital for better treatment.

Wife of the deceased filed a complaint on Thursday night, but did not mention the gas leak, said Penukonda Deputy Superintendent of Police N. Ramya. “We are investigating and will wait for the Inspector of Factories charge sheet and report on the incident,” she added.

The DCIF said that the door of the sludge tank that collects sewer water from five companies - KIA India, Hyundai Glovis, Transic, Mobis, Hyundai Steel, has a self-closing spring-loaded door closer, which worsened the situation. Such sludge tanks should be in the open with good airflow, he opined. This tank collects water used by 6,500 personnel.

The post mortem was being conducted at Government General Hospital mortuary here on Friday.


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Printable version | Mar 11, 2022 1:10:44 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/tn-engineer-dies-in-gas-leak-at-kia-cars-factory-in-anantapur/article65213792.ece