the cases detected tripled

the cases detected tripled
the cases detected tripled

According to company records, the number of illegal installations found in 2023 marks a new annual record. The accumulated of the 12 months of last year shows a total of 1599 clandestine connections. Of this total, 390 cases correspond to CABA and 1,209 to the province of Buenos Aires, which also reflects that there were a greater number of operations from the company’s Inspection and Control area in Buenos Aires territory.

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In 2023, 1,599 irregular installations were discovered, while the previous year there were 544.

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This figure is an abrupt jump compared to previous years. In 2022, they had been detected 544 clandestine connections; in 2021, they were 636, and in 2019, the total was 424.

“The main risk of a clandestine connection is the explosion that can be generated from a natural gas leak into the atmosphere. Other risks may be a fire or carbon monoxide poisoning, in addition to damage to people and/or materials due to the effect of an explosion or a fire,” they detail from the company, which provides service to more than two million users.

On the brink of tragedy

In July 2023 there was an explosion in an apartment located in the Chacarita neighborhood. The greatest damage was broken glass in the balcony window of the living room, in the bathroom, breaks in a Durlock partition and loosening of masonry. The cause of the explosion was a gas accumulation within the plenum that contains the route of the internal pipes of all the units of the building. When inspecting the site, qualified MetroGAS personnel detected a total of 32 clandestine connectionswhich supplied gas to the kitchens in the apartments.

“The Chacarita building is one of the cases in which a clandestine gas connection could have been fatal. After the explosion, more than 50 inhabitants had to be evacuated from the home,” the distributor explained.

Previously, in March, there was a fire in a hostel in San Telmo. The fire started in the kitchen and was put out with fire extinguishers by the occupants. At the scene, the firefighters detected that the gas niche was empty, there was no meter and the supply to the 45 units of the complex was done by a direct connection made in an illegal manner.

In November of last year, MetroGAS detected in a company located in the Buenos Aires town of Avellaneda, a clandestine connection that allowed the entry of natural gas into the home without being measured and without having an internal installation approved by the distributor. Upon carrying out the corresponding inspection, it was found a large boiler on that was supplied by that clandestine connection. On public roads, meanwhile, a perpendicular derivation to the main pipe of MetroGAS that entered the property and allowed the passage of natural gas without being measured.

“This type of connection is a huge risk for those involved, not only for the people who live in the location but also for the rest of the community. Enabling an installation without the corresponding security measures can lead to a real catastrophe“, held Diego SiriDirector of Operations at MetroGAS.

Finally, also in November, there was another fire in a factory in Luis Guillóngame of Esteban Echeverria. After firefighters controlled the incident, the MetroGAS crew found a direct gas connection, in which a leak occurred. That was what started the fire in a mound of waste and the flames also reached semi-shades, trees and part of the exterior of the property.

This is a dangerous case of recidivism since, although the connection was closed, it is suspected that the factory generated a new illegal installation, which is why the company’s Inspection and Control sector is working in the area. The economic group that owns the factory He has eight records of clandestine connections. One of them, detected in June under a stone wall that led to a criminal complaint.

What to do if a clandestine connection is discovered

If you detect a gas connection made illegally inside the home where you live or in neighboring buildings or businesses, the first step is to report the situation to the distributor, so that it can verify the legality of the installation.

For that, MetroGAS provides two basic guidelines that allow you to identify potentially dangerous situations:

  • Any intervention on a natural gas installation carried out both inside the home and on public roads carried out by people other than MetroGAS, its contractor personnel or registered installers.
  • Any natural gas installation that does not have a MetroGAS meter.

The registered gas fitter is the duly identified and authorized professional with theoretical-practical knowledge to diagnose, verify and repair the internal installation and appliances. The list of registered gas operators authorized by the distributor is available at www.metrogas.com.ar.

“For MetroGAS, prioritizing safety is the axis of its actions, and that is why it redoubles its efforts year after year to raise awareness about gas installations. The annual inspection of the devices carried out by a licensed gas technician is key,” Siri concluded.

 
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