IANS reports: Irate villagers staged a protest at the Gas Collection Station (GCS) near Nagarm village; a few vehicles parked there were damaged.
According to officials, all the victims of the explosion are villagers. They include three women and three children. The blast occurred in the pipeline carrying gas to Lanco power station. The pipeline is maintained by GAIL India.
The villagers said their lives were endangered by laying the pipeline through the residential area. They alleged that the officials did not take measures for their safety despite several complaints.
“We have asked the district collector to submit a report. Action will be taken against those found guilty,” State Finance Minister Y. Ramakrishnudu, who hails from the coastal district, said.
PTI reports: Residents of Nagaram village said they heard a deafening sound and soon after a huge ball of fire engulfed the area.
Expressing anguish that the pipelines are located in residential areas, they alleged that officials of oil companies have, of late, not promptly been attending to the safety aspects.
Though smell of gas was being felt in the village, the officials did not look into the possibility of a leakage, they claimed.
“The local residents are angry because they feel that the GAIL authorities did not bother though smell was coming and pipelines were rusting. The Home Minister (N. Chinarajappa) and district officials are talking to them,” Finance Minister Y. Ramakrishnudu said.
He said coconut plantations on about 10 acres of land, which the region is famous for, were gutted and a report is being obtained on all these aspects.
The locals recalled the massive fire in a gas well at Pasarlapudi village in East Godavari district in mid-1990s which could not be put out for nearly two months.
PTI reports: Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan constitutes high-level committee to probe GAIL pipeline fire.
Our Correspondent Srinivas Reddy reports from Hyderabad: A.P. Chief Minister N Chandrababu has cut short his Delhi visit and is flying to East Godavari district to visit the Nagaram village.
Mr. Naidu along with Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will reach the site in a special flight by 12.30 p.m and meet the families of victims.
@PIB_India: President of India condoles the loss of lives in GAIL gas pipeline explosion
Vijayawada Connect @VjaConnect: Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said a committee was constituted to probe into the GAIL gas leak accident.
PMO India @PMOIndia: PM has announced ex-gratia relief of Rs. 2 lakh from PMRF, for the next of kin of those who have lost their lives in the GAIL pipeline fire.
PMO India @PMOIndia: The relief announced by the PM is in addition to the relief assistance given by the Petroleum Ministry and GAIL.
PMO India @PMOIndia: An ex-gratia relief of Rs. 50,000 has also been sanctioned for those who were seriously injured in the incident.
PTI: ONGC shuts Andhra gasfield following fire in GAIL’s pipeline.
Our Correspondent B.V.S. Bhaskar reports from Nagaram, East Godavari district, A.P.:
At least 14 persons are feared dead when a fire broke out in the gas trunk line of GAIL at about 4 a.m. on Friday at Nagaram village in Mamidikuduru mandal of East Godavari district in Andhra Pradesh. The 18-inch pipeline with 70-80 kg psi is 200 feet away from the ONGC gas collecting station Tatipaka. According to initial information the fire could have been triggered by a household stove in the early hours when it came in contact with the leaked gas cloud which was already spread and settled in the area.
The accident is said to have caused a huge loss to property as several of coconut farms, shops and residential buildings were charred in the flames.
The Tatipaka ONGC fire crew immediately informed the GAIL Authorities to close the line. Meanwhile ONGC crew rushed its two fire tenders stationed in Tatipaka GCS and pressed two more fire tenders from Narsapur. Besides the Razole-based government fire tenders joined ONGC and put off the fire. The government has ordered a probe into the accident.
Vijayawada Connect @VjaConnect: GAIL pipeline leak accident: Union Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu to inspect the accident spot.
Vijayawada Connect @VjaConnect: AP CM N. Chandrababu Naidu orders probe into the GAIL pipeline leak accident in East Godavari district.
Vijayawada Connect @VjaConnect: GAIL pipeline leak accident: A.P CM N. Chandrababu Naidu cancels Delhi tour to inspect the spot.
PTI reports: 14 people killed in fire following gas pipeline blast in Andhra Pradesh’s East Godavari district: AP Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu.
“As per initial reports we have received, 14 deaths have been reported and some more are critically injured and undergoing treatment,” Mr. Ramakrishnudu told reporters in Hyderabad.
According to an official of the East Godavari district, the administration has recovered 13 bodies from the accident site while another death was reported from the hospital where the injured are being treated.
East Godavari District Collector Neetu Kumari Prasad told PTI that the incident took place in the early hours.
“As of now the fire has been brought under control. Fire engines were rushed to the spot and rescue operations are underway,” Ms. Prasad said.
The accident occurred at Nagaram village in Amalapuram Mandal, she said, adding that three persons are critically injured.
All the injured have been rushed to a nearby hospital, the collector said.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu expressed shock over the loss of lives in the incident.
Mr. Naidu, who is now on a visit to Delhi, reviewed the situation with the collector and senior officials.
He asked state Deputy Chief Minister N. Chinarajappa and the collector to rush to the spot to monitor the relief operation.
Narendra Modi @narendramodi: My thoughts with the families of those who lost their lives in the GAIL Pipeline fire in AP. Prayers with the injured.
Narendra Modi @narendramodi: I have spoken to the Petroleum Minister, Cabinet Secretary & GAIL Chairman and asked them to ensure immediate relief at the accident site.