Cochin Shipyard Tragedy: Explosion above Ballast Tank led to Fatal Mishap

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ONGC Sagar Bhushan (Image Courtesy: RIGZONE)

Multiple government agencies have initiated inquiries into the explosion in ONGC’s oil rig Sagar Bhushan, docked at Cochin Shipyard two days back. As per the preliminary assessment of the Director of Factories and Boilers, the accident was a result of a momentary explosion of “high impact”, near the A/C plant, which is situated above the Ballast Tank.

Five workers were killed and seven injured in the tragedy which occurred on Tuesday. The probable location of the explosion was identified based on the nature of the deflections on the bulkheads (steel walls) and the damage extant observed during the inspection, the inquiry revealed.

On the other hand, the Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) authority clarified that the source of gas leakage and reason for the explosion is yet to be confirmed. An internal inquiry has been ordered by the company.

“The accident is observed to have happened near the air conditioning plant, when the area was being inspected by CSL Fire and Safety personnel prior to issuing work permit for starting work,” the CSL said.

Minister of State for Shipping, Pon Radhakrishnan visited the accident site on Thursday and had an interaction with the Management, site team, employees, Trade union leaders, Fire & Safety Team and Medical Team.

The Minister directed CSL to expedite the process of providing employment to a kin of the each deceased. Earlier the company declared financial assistance of INR 10 Lakhs (USD 15,650) to the family of the deceased in addition to other statutory benefits.

Sea News, February 16