Govt amends ammonium nitrate rules to curb pilferage, introduces fire-fighting provisions
The government on Tuesday said it has amended Ammonium Nitrate rules to curb pilferage, and has introduced fire-fighting provisions as well as improved handling and storage houses for the chemical following the major explosion at Beirut port in August 2020, that killed about 140 people.
Nearly 3,000 tons of ammonium nitrate was stored at Beirut's port for six years that detonated in 2020, wreaking death and destruction.
Additional Secretary in the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) Sumita Dawra said that rules pertaining to five major areas – static and mobile pressure vehicles, calcium carbide, ammonium nitrate, gas cylinders, and petroleum and explosives were examined in the light of lessons learned from ammonium nitrate explosion in Beirut.
She said that to curb pilferage of ammonium nitrate, provisions have been made to import the chemical in bagged form only as this will reduce the handling of loose chemicals at port and therefore enhance safety.
''Provisions have been made for adequate fire-fighting facilities and shelters for security guards,'' she told reporters here.
Ammonium nitrate received at the ports is now required to be removed/transferred to the nearby storage houses situated 500 meter beyond the port area, she added.
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