Executive Secretary of Nigeria Association of LPG Marketers Association (NAPGAM), Mr. Bassey Essien, has declared that gas cylinders have expiry dates, noting that all Nigerians with cylinders in their kitchens must be familiar with the expiry date to aid their safety. Essien said this in a chat with New Telegraph, maintaining that in Nigeria, a gas cylinder has 15 years life span. “Cylinders have expiry dates.
The year of manufacture is always embossed at the neck of the cylinder. In Nigeria, a gas cylinder has a 15 years life span. You know this by looking at the year of manufacture of the cylinder at the neck of it and add 15 years to that. If a cylinder is produced in 2020, it means the cylinder will expire in 2035,” the gas safety advocate said. He continued: “However, before the expiry date, it must be tested every 5 years to ensure the integrity is intact and also indicated that it has passed the integrity test on each of those five years.” The ownership of cylinders has been generating heated debate in NiGERIA.
While some of the view that the ownership of cylinders should be for government, others argue that individuals are the most appropriate to own the canisters. “In Nigeria, except the government makes cylinder available to every household, then cylinder should be owned by the individual.
In the cylinder exchanges at the shops, no one will buy a brand new cylinder to go and exchange it for a rickety, old or even expired cylinder at the shop,” Essien said. Piping of gas into homes instead of a supply through cylinder, he said, might be “safer but our building plans must change to incorporate reticulation.” According to him, “we can start with structured estates and housing units and better managed physical planning in the states in the country to adequately map out and enforce building plans to take into consideration piping of gas into household.
The past building plans will make it very difficult to start piping gas into homes but future buildings structures must be adjusted to the modern state of piping gas into homes.” Asked whether gas piping is safe for our environment, given the fact that even water pipes break, Essien said; “That is why l say that it can be firstly restricted to structures housing units and estate for starters.
The pipes we are talking about are not just water pipes, they are specialised gas pipes and subjected to heavy production standards and certification. “In Nigeria my association and other stakeholders have been embarking on awareness on how to handle and keep gas cylinder safe. Storage is very important. We have been circulating hand bills, have radio shows and jingles on how to maintain gas cylinders. “We cannot stop the advocacy.
Even the elites also fall short in the areas of cylinder maintenance. Cylinders should not be stored under the sun or under the rain as all these affect the physical appearance of the cylinders. But most importantly ensure the cylinder has not expired.” On the proliferation of gas outlets in the country, he said this was equally of great concern to his association. “Sadly most of them do not have the requisite approval and certification to operate and thus do not necessarily meet the standards and requirements for licensing. When we encounter such, they are reported to regulatory authorities for further actions. “However, citing gas outlets in residential areas is not is abnormal because the same gas is for domestic usage. The devastation a 5kg cylinder can cause can be as fatal as that of a much larger containment vessel especially if there are combustible materials around such vicinity.
“The main thing of concern is the observance of safety requirements for such an outlet thus if such outlets wherever located dangerously would never pass any approval test by the regulators. So it is of utmost importance where you suspect should contraption within your vicinity for you to urgently draw the attention of authorities to actually confirm if they have a license. “Another issue again is in most cases, the gas plant would have been located in a remote area but with time development encroaches and takes over the gas plant. It will be wrong to now ask the plant to relocate,” he said.