Restaurants in Malaysia urged to get gas pipe tested

Restaurants in Malaysia urged to get gas pipe tested
PHOTO: The Star/ANN

KUALA LUMPUR: All restaurants at a shopping mall here that have not had their gas piping tested will be advised to close after a mid-morning explosion which injured seven workers.

Two maintenance workers suffered facial burns and five restaurant staff sustained minor injuries in the blast that damaged two eating outlets at the Mid Valley Megamall.

City Fire and Rescue Department assistant director (operations) Azizan Ismail said the workers were conducting tests on the restaurants' liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) piping features.

"One of the men was testing the piping at the restaurant on the ground floor while the other was at another outlet on the lower ground floor when the explosion happened," he told reporters at the scene yesterday.

At the restaurant on the ground floor, pieces of shattered glass were seen strewn all over while the furniture was scattered about. The lower ground outlet saw damage to its shutters as well as its ceiling.

The two workers, said Azizan, were rushed to the Pantai Medical Centre by members of the public while the others received outpatient treatment.

He said it dispatched a fire engine and the Hazardous Materials (Hazmat) and Forensic Units to the scene upon receiving an alert at around 10.20am.

Investigations, said Azizan, showed that the management had just performed maintenance on the LPG piping fixtures as well as installed a bypass between The Gardens 20,000 kilolitre LPG tanks and the 40,000 kilolitre LPG tanks at Mid Valley Megamall.

Tests were being carried out after the installation of the bypass on Monday when the blast happened.

"We have advised the management to close all restaurants that have not been tested. Those that have already been tested will remain in operation and the rest should only be re-opened once tests are conducted.

"We are investigating the cause of the explosion and the Hazmat Unit is taking samples for further analysis," he said, adding that there were some 100 restaurants in Mid Valley Megamall and The Gardens.

In a statement, Mid Valley said there were minor injuries to its maintenance staff, LPG contractor and tenant staff.

"We are working with the relevant authorities and have shut all the gas systems in Mid Valley Megamall until further notice," it said, adding that the mall would however remain open.

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