At least two persons were burnt alive in a gas pipeline explosion in Imampet in Nalgonda district on Saturday afternoon.
Both the deceased are GAIL employees who were conducting a routine pipeline maintenance check. Four other employees were also injured in the blast. The blast was a result of gas leak, police said.
The accident occurred when an instrumental ‘pig’, which is used to clean the pipeline, ejected out of the pipeline, killing the two persons standing at the mouth of the pipeline, an official said.
There was no fire or blast, he added.
One of the dead is a GAIL employee and the other is a worker of the contractor.
The two were not supposed to stand in front of the barrel of the pipeline during the pigging or cleaning operations, he said.
Meanwhile, Nalgonda District Fire Officer Harinath Reddy said the accident occurred at around 11:45 am when some workers were removing the ‘pig’ from the branch pipeline at a gas station in Suryapet.
Heavy pressure blew out from the pipeline, which made the two workers standing at the mouth of the pipeline getting blown away, he said, adding that the two workers dashed into a nearby compound wall.
The gas is supplied from Visakhapatnam to Cherllapalli in Hyderabad and its IP-2 station is located in Suryapet, he said.
“Due to the impact of the heavy pressure while removing the ‘pig’ from the branch pipeline, the two workers were thrown away and they died instantaneously while three others were injured in the incident,” the officer told PTI.
“There was no fire or leakage of gas,” he said, adding that it was only when some workers were isolating the ‘pig’ from the branch pipeline to enable the flow of LPG smoothly in the main pipeline.
“It happened apparently due to mishandling or mismanagement during removal of the ‘pig’,” he added.
A ‘pig’ is used to clean the pipeline to detect any problem of the pipelines, Reddy said.
(With PTI inputs)