Mumbai: Three persons were injured, two of whom sustained serious injuries after the fuel tank of an autorickshaw exploded as it was being filled with Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) at a Malad petrol pump on Saturday morning. Police said the fuel tank exploded as it was overfilled. The petrol pump has been temporarily closed pending investigation, said a Mahanagar Gas Ltd (MGL) official.
According to police sources, the incident took place around 8 am on Saturday, when an autorickshaw fuel tank exploded while being refuelled at Kapadia petrol pump near Milap Cinema in Malad (W). The rickshaw was completely destroyed in the explosion. The driver, Anil More, 57, sustained injuries on his leg while two bystanders, Sohail Shaikh, 57, and Shailesh Tiwari, 25, were injured when they were hit by parts of the vehicle that blew apart as a result of the explosion. Shaikh was standing nearby.
The petrol pump staff rushed the injured to Tunga Hospital, where Tiwari was discharged after treatment for minor injuries while More and Shaikh are still being treated and their condition has been described as critical. Nitin Pondkule, senior police inspector of Kandivali police station said, “The cause of the blast is not known but we are investigating and experts have joined the probe.”
A team from Mumbai Fire Brigade and Mahanagar Gas arrived at the Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) outlet but by then the flames had been doused. However, officials closed the pump as a precautionary measure. After the incident, Mahanagar Gas Ltd has suspended CNG filling operations. In its official statement, the agency said, “There was an incident of cylinder blast in an autorickshaw at Kapadia Brothers’ CNG filling station. CNG filling at the outlet is currently suspended and an investigation is being conducted by CCOE.”