Kumasi Fire: Polytank Ghana Limited directed to halt all operations with immediate effect

0
1
kumasi-fire:-polytank-ghana-limited-directed-to-halt-all-operations-with-immediate-effect

By Nicholas Osei Wusu

The Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, and the Ghana National Fire Service have directed Management of Polytank Ghana Limited to, with immediate effect, cease all operations including production activities, until further notice.

Additionally, the EPA has ordered Management of the water storage tanks manufacturer to submit to the environmental regulatory body a comprehensive report detailing environmental compliance institutional measures before the disaster struck including the lapses that could have contributed to the gas explosion at its premises.

The Ashanti Regional Director of EPA, Mr. Samuel Oteng, made this known to GBC News in an interview at the scene of the incident on Friday June 17, 2022, at Kyirapatre in the newly created Asokwa Municipality.

Polytank Ghana Limited, manufacturer of various sizes of plastic water storage tanks, has been operating from the industrial enclave of the Shoe Factory at Kyirapatre in the newly created Asokwa Municipality of the Ashanti region for years.

This factory is separated by a street from the Shoe Factory. Also in close proximity are the Ghana Cooperative College and a Technical and Vocation Training Center and surrounded by residential facilities by workers and squatters.

Polytank Ghana Limited uses treated water, sachet and some chemicals as its raw materials for production. These are considered as highly combustible. The company also relies heavily on Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG as its main energy source.

At about 11.30 am Friday June 17, 2022, a fully loaded gas tanker arrived and was in the process of discharging its load into the company’s depot when the explosion occurred.

Master Jonathan Opoku, a resident who also works at one of the Companies within the premises, was the first to detect the fire and gave an account of the incident.

His account was corroborated by the Ashanti Regional Commander of the Ghana National Fire Service, ACFO Henry Giwa who told GBC News about the preliminary findings of the Service upon arriving at the scene.

 

”The Company has since been ordered to put on hold all operations until completion of investigations and others”, he noted.

The Fire Service commandeered five fire engines from Kumasi and beyond before the inferno could be subdued. Also responding swiftly to the disaster were Personnel of the National Disaster Management Organization, NADMO led by its Ashanti Regional Director, Mr. Frank Duodu.

They cordoned off the area as a crime scene for a thorough investigation into the cause of the disaster. Mr. Duodu said ”initial findings suggest that the company Polytank Ghana limited lacked safety precautions, which could have averted the incident”.

The Ashanti Regional Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, Mr. Samuel Oteng, also directed the Management of the company to submit to his office within 24 hours a comprehensive report about the incident including any lapses that should have been addressed before the disaster.

Meanwhile, the security and safety agencies involved in bringing the incident under control told GBC News that no casualty had been recorded, at least, as at the time of leaving the scene, even though the eyewitness claimed that one person sustained minor injury.

Beside this, the main structure of the factory appears weakened by the inferno and posing danger to life for which NADMO Officials say an expert’s view will be sought to determine the next line of action.

Two private vehicles, a minivan and a salon car were also burnt.

Meanwhile, children of the LOBAB Academy, a private basic school located about 20 metres from the scene of the explosion were safely evacuated through a swift public announcement by the Ghana National Fire Service.

More Stories Here

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here