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25 January, 2020 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 25 January, 2020 01:36:54 AM
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Concern as steel cylinders of LPG pose cancer risk

Composite fibre cylinders offer a safer alternative
Staff Reporter, Dhaka
Concern as steel cylinders 
of LPG pose cancer risk

Amid an increasing popularity of LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) cylinders for household, vehicle and commercial use in the country, the risks posed by ‘substandard’ cylinders have become a cause of concern. Along with the hazard of fire and explosion from date-expired and substandard cylinders, a new risk of cancer from Zinc Chromate used as coating for steel cylinders has given rise to fear among users.

Zinc chromate, used as a primer to coat steel LPG cylinders, is highly toxic and can cause cancer in humans, said a recent petition filed with an Indian court by Paladin Paints and Chemicals Pvt Ltd., a paint manufacturer. According to a report by Indian news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) published on January 6, 2020, the Bombay High Court directed the Union Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas to consider concerns raised by a city-based company on hazards of using a chemical as a primer to coat LPG cylinders, after a hearing on the petition.

The petition said that an LPG cylinder is a basic product and is being used in almost every household and business entity in India and it is necessary to take immediate steps to rectify the problem (of cancer risk). The petition sought a ban on the use of zinc chromate as cylinder primer coat.

A division bench of Mumbai court later directed the Union government to consider the petition as a representation and look into the concerns raised in it expeditiously.

In Bangladesh, LPG is becoming increasingly popular as the government has decided not to give new piped natural gas connections to households and commercial entities.

According to the Department of Explosives, there are about 2.2 crore active LPG cylinders in the market and around 70–80 lakh LPG cylinders get refilled each year. Other than households, LPG use is also increasing in hotels, restaurants, automobiles and small

industries and most of these are steel cylinders.

As an alternative to steel cylinders, some countries have started the use of composite fiber cylinders, which are durable, safer and lighter than steel or aluminum cylinders and made of fibers and plastic resin instead of metal. Recently, a company has introduced composite cylinders in Bangladesh. Currently, the top 15 LPG bottling companies in Bangladesh have invested about Tk. 5,000 crore. Imported cylinders with a capacity of 12 kg cost around Tk 2,200 to Tk 2,400. But, the companies offer cylinders at Tk 800 to Tk 900 to get customers.

According to experts, composite cylinders are light, explosion resistant, and zinc chromate is not used in these. Therefore, it should be used in various places including households for improved safety.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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