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Sunday, December 5, 2021

This is what you should do if your home gas cylinder catches fire

Knowing what to do in the event of a gas leak or a cylinder fire in your home will one day save your life and that of your family.

The Chief Officer of the Fire and Rescue Training School, H.S. H. Madhusiri explained how a leak can occur from a domestic gas cylinder and what action should be taken then.

He emphasizes the value of placing the cylinder in a place where it can be easily removed from the kitchen. "The most important thing is to keep this gas cylinder in a place where it can be quickly removed in case of an emergency," he said.

He also says that the pipe leading from the gas cylinder to the stove should be 'original' and that the use of a replacement pipe is inappropriate.

There are two main types of gas fires. In one of these cases, the cylinder may catch fire with a gas leak, and in the second, a gas leak may not cause a fire. The second type is the most dangerous.

Here's how to use gas properly at home
The kitchen door and window should be left open for about two minutes before using the gas. Then if you do not smell the gas is not a problem
It is best to keep all curries ready for cooking before lighting the stove
When using gas, it is important not to engage in any other activities (such as making phone calls or using a phone). It is best to avoid bringing a cell phone into the kitchen (as it may have a fire extinguisher as it may have electronic components).
When lighting a gas stove, press the knob and turn it to make a noise. This noise is caused by the release of a spark to ignite the gas, which can start emitting gas even if the spark is not released. The gas so released collects around the stove. Here, if you try several times and light the stove, there is a risk of igniting the gases that have accumulated around the stove as mentioned earlier. Therefore, a gas stove should be lit at the same time, making a loud noise
Hair should not be left loose when using a gas stove. The sleeves of the shirt / shirt should not extend below the elbows. Long shawls worn especially by Muslim and Hindu women should be discarded when using gas stoves
If the gas pipe passes through direct bends, in such places something like a piece of cloth or a rubber sheet should be laid to keep the pipe from bending or breaking.
If the gas cylinder catches fire, do this
Madhusiri, the fire officer, explained what should be done if the gas cylinder catches fire even after following all the instructions given by you.

"After all this, if an unexpected gas leak causes the cylinder to catch fire, do not overturn the gas cylinder!" If it does not, liquid gas will come out and a big fire will come with a big explosion, no excuses for anyone. A big explosion with a fire can't be stopped. Try to remove as much of the gas cylinder from the kitchen as possible, away from anyone. No problem, no explosions. Remove it as it is kept upright in the gas cylinder. ”

“If the kitchen catches fire with the gas cylinder, do not try to extinguish it, it may explode. The only way to put it out is to call the fire brigade, the police, and a large stream of water. That is dangerous, ”he added.

Fire Officer Madhusiri advises not to try to extinguish the gas cylinder in the kitchen.

“The best thing is to take the [cylinder] out, take out a well-moistened, water-soaked sack and place it on top of the cylinder so that it closes. If you can't do it once, put it twice, put it three times. Mostly extinguished. If it's not extinguished, if there's a fire extinguisher, it's extinguished with a touch of dry powder and carbon dioxide. ”

The best thing to do here is to pull the cylinder upright and remove it from the kitchen and move it to a place where no one is.

"But after the fire was extinguished, all the regulators in the gas cylinder were burnt. So if you go outside, there will be a lot of damage, because the gas leak can not be stopped. Gas leaks all four rounds. Putting it in an unoccupied area means that if the gas is turned off, there is no place to turn it off. If gas leaks and people go near and smoke a cigarette, make a call, or go on the road, it can inevitably catch fire. ”

Smelling gas can also be fatal.

What if there is a gas leak without a fire?
A gas leak without a fire is a dangerous situation. If the rooms outside the kitchen also smell of gas, you should know that the condition is very serious.

“There are three requirements that must be met in order for a fire to break out. We call it the 'Fire Triangle'. We need oxygen, we need fuel, we need a spark. Then if this gas had leaked, the house would have oxygen, the house would have been full of gas, and we would have lost just one spark to complete the fire triangle. If we do not know when we will do this, ”said fire officer Madhusiri.

According to him, there are some things you should not do when you smell a gas to prevent sparks:

The use of mobile phones during gas leaks is strictly prohibited. Mobile phones use the touchpad, but when the buttons are pressed, it produces an invisible spark in its circuits. If gas has entered the phone, the fire triangle is likely to start from there
Do not “turn on” or “turn off” any electrical switch, including the main switch.
If there are small children, pregnant women, the disabled or the elderly in the home, they should be taken to a place where the smell of gas is not felt and care should be taken not to return to the place where the gas leak occurred.
If you need help from anyone, you should only use your cell phone after getting away from a gas leak.
Avoid starting any vehicle, including motorcycles in the area with a gas leak
Go to the kitchen only after opening the door and window very slowly and turn off the gas cylinder from the regulator
The best way to prevent a gas leak is to turn off the gas cylinder after every meal, or at least after dinner, just like we would normally turn off the lights or close the doors and windows.

Excerpt - BBC Sinhala News Service

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