Mangaluru, dec 16, 2016 :The fearful accidents involving ’Bullet Tankers’ recently has caused high concern will LPG supply to Bengaluru only through pipeline be a reality soon?
The commissioning of the Mangaluru-Bengaluru/Mysuru LPG pipeline this October, everyone had hoped that the bullet tankers would disappear from the Mangaluru-Bengaluru National Highway (NH 75). After the commissioning of the pipeline, at least three bullet tankers have overturned between B.C. Road and Gundiya, including the one on Tuesday near Neerakatte, although without any fire mishap. As two of these three tankers were full, the police had to divert traffic for over 10 hours, caution local residents, and take all precautionary measures.
The 355.52-km-long pipeline terminating at Yediyur towards Bengaluru-side and at Mysuru after branching out at Hassan, can take 150 tonnes of LPG per hour, equivalent to the capacity of nine bullet tankers. Though it was commissioned in October-end, sources in the Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd., (HPCL) that constructed and manages the line say the line is yet to operate to its full capacity.
At the same time, contracts with tanker owners would lapse by this month-end and thereafter LPG towards Bengaluru would be supplied only through the pipeline. Tankers are completely withdrawn on Mysuru route, a senior HPCL official said. The number of tankers might have come down to about 100 from the earlier 175 per day on Bengaluru/Mysuru stretch. Apart from these, another 80 tankers move towards Karwar, Goa, Kerala and parts of Tamil Nadu from Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd.’s LPG Import Facility at Mangaluru.
Accidents : The official said from January till December second week, 33 accidents, involving bullet tankers have been reported from the southern region, that is involving tankers originating from Mangaluru towards various destinations. Only three of these accidents resulted in minor LPG leakage which was immediately plugged by the Quick Response Team of HPCL working round the clock.
Superintendent of Police Bhushan Gulabrao Borase told media that several reasons, including curvy road, over speeding, absence of sufficient road-shoulders and unscientific design of the road, are responsible for the accidents. Assistant Superintendent of Police, Puttur, C.B. Ryshyanth, said he too was surprised that three accidents have occurred in the last two months. SP Borase said an accident involving a bullet tanker always keeps the police on their toes as they have to ensure safety from many angles, including of road users and residents of the surrounding area.