Kitty gas bottle explosion victim still hospitalised, condition stable

-probe points to defective cylinder tap

Rabi Hemraj, the Kitty resident who sustained burns about his body during a gas bottle explosion at his Railway Line, Kitty home during last month, remains hospitalized, while his wife has since been discharged.

Stabroek News was reliably informed that 39-year-old Rabi, who sustained third degree burns to his upper body, including his torso, remains warded at the Georgetown Public Hospital. His condition is listed as stable.

His wife, Meera Hemraj, 36, who had also sustained burns and was admitted to the said hospital, has since been discharged. She is said to be at home recuperating.

The incident had occurred around 5.15 am on September 26, at the bottom flat of the Lot 45 Railway Line, Kitty house, occupied by the couple.

Stabroek News had previously reported that the couple had just awoken and was in the kitchen when a gas bottle exploded as Meera was about to light the gas stove.

The explosion left most of their bottom flat destroyed.

Defective

A Guyana Fire Service source yesterday informed this newspaper that fire investigators were able to ascertain that there were two gas bottles in the house at the time the explosion occurred.

The source said that investigations revealed that while attempting to change the cylinder taps, Rabi experienced some difficulties.

 “So he (Rabi) took off the head from that cylinder and place in on another cylinder, which he got through with and attempted to light the stove thereafter. But what he did not know is that the reason why he wasn’t getting the first cylinder to accept the head was because there is a pin that had to be depressed on the cylinder so as to allow the release of gas. That puncher pin apparently was defective”, the source explained.

However, the source noted that it has not yet been established whether Rabi damaged the cylinder tap during the process or whether it was defective prior to its purchase.

“But apparently some damage occurred and after he (Rabi) would have changed over to the other cylinder, not realising that the gas from the first cylinder had already begun to take over the atmosphere,” the source added.

The room was enclosed at the time, which caused the environment to become fuel-saturated. As a result, the explosion occurred, the source noted.

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