‘Emulsion explosives to be used for flat demolition’

After NOC from District Magistrate, blast plan requires PESO approval

The blast plan prepared by the two agencies, Edifice Engineering, Mumbai, and Vijay Steels, Salem, which will carry out the demolition of the four flats at Maradu, will soon be submitted to the District Magistrate for a no-objection certificate, after which it will require the approval of the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO).

The organisation would see to it that emulsion explosives authorised by it were used for the implosion set for next month, said R. Venugopal, Deputy Chief Controller of Explosives, PESO, who is on the technical committee overseeing the demolition. Emulsion explosives were safer, both for transportation and in terms of environmental impact, said Mr. Venugopal.

PESO will ensure that emergency plans are activated for on and off site safety and that explosives are transported in vans authorised by the organisation. Shot firers or blasters, who would load the explosives into thousands of holes in the buildings, would have to be certified and mining engineers would be required to supervise the demolition, he said. The holes will be connected by non-electric detonators designed to initiate explosions.

Mr. Venugopal was speaking on the sidelines of a quiz on safety in hazardous industries held in the city on Saturday.

Accidents involving explosive material in industries were infrequent in the State despite districts such as Ernakulam housing several industries that were classified as ‘major accident hazard industries’, which handled explosive materials like LPG in excess of 10 metric tonnes or more than five cylinders of chlorine, said Mr. Venugopal.

The recent gas pipeline leak in the city could have been avoided if there had been better coordination among agencies, he said.

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