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Old 24th June 2007, 00:33   #1
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Default Leakage of LPG killed the driver?

Hi... a case of an omni van catching fire was reported yesterday in Trivandrum.

Driver dies after van catches fire - Newindpress.com

Here is the picture taken by a friend:
Picasa Web Albums - Mitra - Untitled Album

Another friend who watched the report on TV said it was an imported LPG kit.

In the light of this incident, whether it was the LPG kit that caused the fire or not, I'm rethinking my plan to buy wagon r duo. I would like to get your comments on this specific mishap as well as the general safety of LPG as a vehicle fuel.
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Old 24th June 2007, 07:57   #2
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Ya i also heard the news. i have a plan of converting my baleno to lpg. now iam dropping that.
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Old 24th June 2007, 09:58   #3
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Hi Guys,
i have used LPG for over 2 years. Before you decide not to buy / buy LPG cars, do answer to yourself the following questions:
1. What was the kit the Omni guy was using (most likely a LPG domestic cylinder)
2. Was the gas kit used by Omni a good one? (reputed ones include Lovato etc and I am not talking about just one part of it. The whole kit should be genuine including the tank).
3. Who installed it? (Most reputed dealers install it quite well. In fact, a factory fitted Maruti can only be as safe as it can be).

So, all i am saying is, going to a reputed dealer, whom you know has converted quite a few cars, helps in overall reliability. Going for a factory fitted one is even better.
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Old 24th June 2007, 21:53   #4
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As someone who works in this industry, I have only two questions to ask:
Is the gas heavier than air? If yes, it will settle down instead of dispersing.
What is the % by volume range at which there can be a fire/explosion.

Don't get me wrong. LPG is a superb fuel, very good for engine too (much less power loss than CNG), but the above properties make it a no no, atleast for me. Rest, your life, your car.

Kit quality, fitment etc is all fine - ultimately, there's Murphy, and question to ask is whether in a screwup scenario, what can happen. The above two questions are food for thought enough. Rest, Google is always around to help
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Old 24th June 2007, 22:23   #5
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this type of accidents make me think more than twice why people fit lpg in their cars they virtually sitting on a time bomb

i would consider driving less and not to put lpg in my car ever

my the mans soul rest in peace
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Old 25th June 2007, 00:19   #6
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Noticed couple of things in the picture link mitravisaya posted. It was raining when the picture was taken and i know for a fact that it has been raining for the past few days in Kerala. So presumably the person driving it had his windows up and the leaky gas ignited in a car which did not have much air circulation.

Would the story have changed if it was a more normal day and he was driving with his windows open.

Also does Auto LPG have the smelling agent that the Gas bottlers put in the Gas Cylinders at home to detect gas leaks .
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Old 25th June 2007, 11:04   #7
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The agent Ethyl Mercaptan, is ALWAYS added, both to CNG and LPG. That being said, here is what the Central Pollution Control Board says:
Quote:
Safety Issues: Safety is an issue with LPG, however, standards for application, storage and distribution already exists. The hazard associated with on-board storage should be similar to that of gasoline, especially if reinforced cylinders similar to that of CNG tanks are used. LPG fuel systems have many built-in safety features and they generally maintain their integrity in severe collisions and do not permit massive leaks. LPG is about twice as heavier than air and unlike CNG does not disperse easily in air. Its flammability limits (2.1-9.5 vol.%) and auto ignition temperature (450 degrees C) are also lower than natural gas and as such should not be handled carelessly. Accident statistics, though limited, indicate that LPG or propane is as safe as gasoline.
Re-read the bold sections. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to tell you that LPG is not very safe. In the event of Murphy deciding to play, it may turn into a death trap. Ultimately, your car, your life.
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Old 25th June 2007, 11:49   #8
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LPG is a great fuel, but highly unsafe due to its physical attributes.

1) It will not dissipate in air, easily.

2) Flammable at room temp

Please ensure to get, the best kit with all safety enhancements done.

Secondly, Ensure that you register the conversion in your RC and also in your Insurance- Most avoid this because, either the kit is not legally approved or the car which is going for retrofittment does not enlist with the Safety approval as defined by Age of the vehicle/Bharat Stage Norm.

Many users here are using the system safely like Ajo- Just ensure these factors and wish you happy gassing..driving I mean !
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Old 25th June 2007, 11:50   #9
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Why couldn't it have been a leak in his petrol line supply, why do we always have to jump to conclusions that it was a LPG kit, imported kit etc without knowing any facts. It may be a LPG leak, but does anyone know how well it was installed & how well kept it was ? IMO, omni is firstly the most unsafe 4 wheeler on the Indian roads & its owners/drivers care a hoot about maintanence (I am generalising here, there are a minority of good owners), which could well be the reason for this fire.
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Old 25th June 2007, 14:04   #10
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Hi all,
It is to be noted that the person who was killed was a mechanic, and from my opinion, the vehicles of mechanics are the most poorly maintained ones, especially if it an Omni.
One more matter is, in Omni the LPG kit can only be fitted on the space which is directly under the front co-passenger seat. So on leaking we can very well feel the LPG smell than other cars where it is fitted in the engine bay. So on Omni there is a higher probability of leaking gas entering into the cabin space. Anyhow its detectable especially on rainy season. The Poor guy would have ignored the indication that ultimately paid the price.
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Old 25th June 2007, 15:12   #11
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Safety is definately an issue with LPG kits.
I myself seen an accidents on DND Flyway, where a LPG installed car hit the truck, which was coming on the wrong side, from the back side of the car, where the cylender is placed. The car immediately caught the fire and it happened so quickly, that 2 people inside the car didn't get a chance to get out from the car. They were died on the spot.
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Old 25th June 2007, 20:54   #12
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Well, I have heard about quite a few LPG vehicles going up in smoke, and have decided against LPG in yet-to-be-delivered WagonR. I had done some research on Xeta, and know that Xeta (petrol) can be covnerted to use CNG, and that is a far safer option. However, CNG is not availabel everywhere; so have decided to stick with petrol for the time being.
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Old 25th June 2007, 21:34   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BaCkSeAtDrIVeR View Post
Well, I have heard about quite a few LPG vehicles going up in smoke, and have decided against LPG in yet-to-be-delivered WagonR.
Atleast manufacturers like Maruti will not play around with LPG if they are not sure on its safety. Remember accidents can happen anytime and anyway. WagonRDuo is selling fairly well. Absolutely no discounts.

Dont worry, just go ahead and take it. CNG is not available anywhere in South India.
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Old 25th June 2007, 22:52   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlather View Post
Safety is definately an issue with LPG kits.
I myself seen an accidents on DND Flyway, where a LPG installed car hit the truck, which was coming on the wrong side, from the back side of the car, where the cylender is placed. The car immediately caught the fire and it happened so quickly, that 2 people inside the car didn't get a chance to get out from the car. They were died on the spot.

well, rlather, how did the car hit the truck 'from the back side of the car' ? was it going in reverse ????
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Old 26th June 2007, 01:08   #15
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@manikjeet: I echo your thoughts 100%. Why invite trouble by being penny wise and pound foolish eventually ? Although, I here factory fitted ones are good and am not commenting on them.


Also, from the picture, it is not quite clear as to how the fire spread and killed the driver. Maybe the interiors were gutted completely (which is not seen in the photo). From the looks of it, the fire seems to have not affected the exteriors much. Had it been, then the car would have been ripped off all its paint. Poor driver. May his soul rest in peace.

Last edited by rr_zen : 26th June 2007 at 01:11.
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