NPA embarks on education on handling of petroleum products

FuelThe National Petroleum Authority (NPA), has embarked on a campaign to educate the public on the need to handle petroleum products with care in order to avoid accidents.

Mr Yaro Kasambata, the Public Relations Manager (PRM) of the NPA said the institution is worried about the fire out breaks caused by petroleum products, which claim lives, injure others and destroy properties.

He said records at the Burns Unit of the Korle Bu hospital had indicated that 32 per cent of burns are related to petroleum products, describing it as unfortunate.

Mr Kasambata was speaking at a media briefing held in Takoradi as a prelude to the launch of this year’s “Consumer Services Awareness Week” that would take place at Axim in the Nzema East District of the Western Region on July 19.

He said for a start, Premix Fuel Landing Beach Committees, fisherfolks, the coastal communities and motorists in the Western Region have been targeted for education and later extend it to other areas.

Mr Kasambata said petroleum products -Liquefied Petroleum Gas, Petrol, Diesel Kerosene, and Premix serves various important purposes in the promotion of the socio-economic sector and for domestic use, however, it could cause havoc if it is not handled with care.

He therefore urged the public to be cautious in its usage.

He said if applied safely people could work with it without encountering problems and therefore appealed to the public to be cautious by adhering strictly to the petroleum regulations.

At the landing beaches at Shama, the fishermen expressed gratitude to the members of the NPA for the education and said though they were aware of the dangers in handling fuel, little did they know that mobile phone and excessive heat of an object getting closer to the product could also cause danger.

“We all know that premix fuel could cause fire outbreak but we do not know that phones are dangerous because it is common among us to speak on mobile phones while serving the product,” Mr Issa Fynn, a fisherman told the GNA after the education.

The fishermen suggested that landing beaches must be sited far away from residential areas as most of the sites are closer to homes.

Fishermen at Aboadze, Abuesi, Kesewokan, Amenano and Shama-Bentsir complained about irregular supply of the premix fuel, saying the weekly supply of only 60 drums to serve 800 canoes are woefully inadequate thus forcing them to buy fuel from outside to supplement the supply.

Mr Kweku Sersah-Johnson, Chairman of the National Premix Fuel Committee, said the relevance of the work of fishermen to the economy convinced the government to subsidise the product therefore their concerns would be addressed.

Mr Jacob Allotey-Jacobs, Board member of the NPA suggested to the fishermen to erect sheds over the landing beaches to avoid exposure of the product to excessive sunshine.

He said presently, there is no law banning the storage of fuel in gallons in the homes, but considering the hazardous nature of the product people must exercise care and refrain from the practice.

Source: GNA

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