The LPG leakage at the IndianOil Corporation’s Udayamperoor plant, as a bullet tanker was unloading on Monday, created panic among the residents in the area and hundreds of employees working in the plant.
Though a major mishap was avoided, the people are yet to recover from the shock. “It is scary to live close to the unit which can take our lives,” said Manju Vinod Kumar, who is an employee at the Tripunithura taluk hospital.
“My daughter, studying in second standard, and mother were at home while the incident took place and I was on duty at Tripunithura. When I heard about the incident, the Chala LPG tanker lorry tragedy first came to my mind. My house is just half a kilometre from the IOC plant. If a tragedy occurs, we will not be able to escape. I rushed to my house and got my breath back only after seeing my child safe with my mother” she added.
“The incident came to our notice while we were waiting to complete the loading of the gas cylinders to the truck. We saw smoke rising from the eastern side of the plant, where the bulk tanker lorries were unloading. After we came to know it was a gas leak, we ran out quickly without thinking twice,” said K D Shinoj, a driver with IOC.
After an hour of the leakage, the fire and rescue and IOC officials announced that the situation was under control. But that was not enough to stop the emotions of the people. Many people in the area staged a dharna before the plant. They also alleged that the IOC officials are trying to downplay the incident by taking action only against the tanker lorry driver.
“The irresponsible Indian Oil Corporation officials should be punished and the plant should be relocated to another place,” said Biju a resident of Udayamperoor.