Sunog dito, sunog doon!
Television newscasts are riddled with stories about fires almost daily.
Although the locations are different, the causes of the fires are basically the same: electrical overload, naiwanang kandila o sinaing, o depektibong LPG tanks.
The last cause accounts for 40% or almost a thousand of these fires a year, according to the LPG Marketers Association (LPGMA).
Image from http://www.proinfinity.com/lpg/images/stories/scrapped-lpg
Many of the problematic LPG cylinders come from illegal suppliers or dealers, which number more than 5,000 all over the country.
Madalas nakakalusot ang substandard tanks dahil hindi na ganoon kahigpit ang magtayo ng isang LPG distribution business.† Dati, a business owner would have to go through the compliance regulations of the Department of Energy (DOE) or Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to be able to operate.† Nowadays, a barangay clearance or business license would be enough.
But now, the DOE will require those who want to become importers, suppliers, refillers, marketers, retailers or dealers (in short, those who want to engage in the business of LPG trade), to get a standard compliance certificate from the agency.
A standard compliance certificate will be valid for 3 years pero renewable naman ito.
Sanctions await those who will not secure the certification. These range from administrative charges to a fine of P60,000 or higher.
While the DOE is doing its share to make the LPG market safer and compliant to good manufacturing practices, the consumer also has to be vigilant and careful in purchasing LPG cylinders.
Para makasiguradong hindi defective ang mga bibilhing tangke, huwag kunin ang cylinder if:
- the dealer is not authorized to sell or distribute by oil companies or LPGMA;
- The seal is tampered or there is no seal;
- The tank is rusty or is a bit wobbly or off balance when upright
Meanwhile, to strengthen its campaign to ensure safety in the use of petroleum products, the DOE launched six Oil Industry Management Bureau (OIMB) Mobile Testing Vans last September 1, 2014.
The vans are equipped with a sulphur analyzer, which determines the chemicalís levels in the fuel product.† Sulphuric acid is a major environmental pollutant which causes ďacid rain.Ē
May fuel analyzer din ang mga van, which measures the octane percentage of ethanol and density for gasoline, and fatty acid methyl ester and density for diesel. These measure fuel efficiency.
ďAs we welcome this improvement, we must double and even triple our efforts to enforce laws ensuring the quality of products sold to our people,Ē according to DOE Sec. Jericho Petilla, who led the launch.