A serious explosion occurred in a takeaway in the Inner Harbour area Tuesday morning, which injured its four employees, three of them seriously, according to the Fire Services Bureau (CB).
Firemen said they suspected that the blast was caused by gas leaking from the takeaway’s LPG cylinders.
The Fire Services Bureau later discovered that a document applying for a licence to run the takeaway by the owner shows that only electric cooking appliances are allowed to be used there. The Civic and Municipal Affairs Bureau (IACM) said Tuesdaythat the eatery had used gas cooking appliances without ever having submitted the required application.
The Chinese name of the takeaway – Ha Bing Hai Jeung in Cantonese – appears to indicate that is specialises in prawn and crab dishes.
According to the firemen, the explosion occurred at around 6:30 a.m. in the ground-floor takeaway in Rua do Dr.Lourenqo Pereira Marques – a street in the Inner Harbour area running from near The
Riviera Macau residential building to near Pra£a de Ponte e Horta along the waterfront where various piers are located.
Firemen and paramedics rushed to the scene where they found four injured people outside the takeaway. The four injured – employees of the takeaway – told the firemen that the explosion occurred when they were about to close the door at the end of business hours.
The paramedics provided the four injured with emergency treatment and the firemen quickly extinguished the blaze in the takeaway which was badly gutted by the blast. The four injured – three men and a woman – were rushed to the city’s two hospitals.
According to a statement from the public Conde de Sao Januario Hospital Centre yesterday afternoon, two men – aged 29 and 32 -were taken to the public Conde de S. Januario Hospital Centre, while the other man – aged 37 – and the woman – aged 29 – were taken to the private Kiang Wu Hospital.
Of the two injured at the public hospital, one suffered serious cuts on his head and face and remained hospitalised, while the other suffered second degree burns on his head, face and limbs as well as internal injuries to his lungs, and was in the intensive care unit (ICU) until yesterday afternoon, according to the public hospital’s statement. He remained hospitalised last night.
Of the two injured at Kiang Wu Hospital, the man suffered second degree burns to his legs, a fractured pelvis, internal injuries to his lungs and a cerebral contusion, and remained hospitalised, while the woman suffered slight bums to her legs and was discharged after treatment, according to the statement from the public hospital.
Fire Services Bureau Commissioner Leong Iok Sam went to the scene to check the situation. He told reporters that a provisional investigation showed that the explosion was caused by gas leaking from the takeaway’s LPG cylinders.
The firemen confirmed that four LPG cylinders were found on the premises, which did not exceed the statutory maximum number of LPG cylinders allowed to be stored on a business premises, Leong said, adding that his bureau had contacted the provider of the LPG cylinders for follow-up action and the Judiciary Police (PJ) for further investigation.
According to the current regulation on the storing of LPG cylinders, a maximum of three LPG cylinders -each not exceeding 13.5 kilogrammes – are allowed to be stored in a residential unit, while no more than four 13.5-kilogramme LPG cylinders are permitted to be stored on business premises, according to the Fire Services Bureau.
The firemen told the media that following a preliminary investigation into the blast, they discovered that the takeaway’s owner declared in a document applying for a licence to run the business that only electric cooking appliances would be used on the premises.
Yesterday’s IACM statement noted that its officials discovered that the owner ran the takeaway not in accordance with the plan for operating the business approved by the bureau, adding that the owner had changed from electric to gas cooking appliances without submitting the required application to the bureau. The statement said that as a result, the bureau would hold the takeaway’s owner legally responsible for the breach.
A similar blast occurred in early July, when an explosion in a Chinese restaurant in Areia Preta district killed a woman and injured six other people.
July’s explosion gutted the southern Fujianese eatery on the ground floor of Block 2 of Pak Lei Estate in Avenida do Hipodromo on July 3. The blast was also caused by a gas leak from the restaurant’s LPG cylinders.