Five injured in Ammonia gas cylinder explosion

Five persons sustained injuries and were hospitalised yesterday due to an ammonia gas cylinder exploding at a rubber factory in the Wagawatte area in Ingiriya, Horana, according to the Police Media Spokesman’s Office.

The injured were rushed to the Horana hospital and according to doctors, two of the injured are in critical condition.

The injured are from Namunukula, Kahawatte and Lunugala areas and in the ages of 24, 19 and 18

The previous night 17 ammonia tanks had been brought by lorry to the factory and the next morning while unloading the tanks one of the tanks had exploded when it accidentally fell while unloading.

Witnesses said that an explosion was heard and a white smoke had emanated from the gas tank. Two of the boys had been on top of the lorry handing the tanks to the three boys on the ground when the tank had exploded. The three boys on the ground had run off and jumped into the water while the two on the lorry were unable to escape in a hurry. They had inhaled the toxic smoke and taken ill.

Around 27 employees work at this rubber factory and the ammonia is used to prevent the rubber milk from curdling during the process of removing the excess water from the rubber milk, according to the police.

Further investigations into the incident is being carried out by the Ingiriya Police.

 

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