Sharmili Mallick

Bhubaneswar: A major explosion at a CNG station near Raj Bhawan in Bhubaneswar Wednesday afternoon has left many injured apart from destroying massive property and a number of vehicles. As per latest reports, nine persons who sustained burn injuries have been shifted to hospital for treatment while two of them are stated to be critical.

Narrating the horrific incident, eyewitnesses and persons present close-by claimed the intensity of the explosion was so severe that it felt like an earthquake.

“I was paying money after filling petrol in my bike when debris of shattered roofs fell on us. Later, we saw fire burst at the back side of the petrol pump. I was fortunate enough that I managed to escape from the spot on time. It felt like an earthquake and I am unable to hear anything properly because of the blast,” said a youth.

Another person who stays close to the mishap site said, “The sound of the blast could be heard to people staying as far as 5 kms away from the mishap spot. Many buildings have suffered cracks due to the explosion. It felt like tremors of earthquake.”

Another youth present at the filling station to refill his bike said, “I was in the queue when some of us first felt the ground vibrating. Within fraction of a second, there was an explosion from a tank in the backyard of the filing station that rocked the entire area and everything went dark for a moment."

Panic gripped people so much so that all those filling fuel scurried hither and thither to save themselves. "This is for the first time in my life that I have encountered such a mishap. The intensity of the blast was so high that I am unable to hear properly. Thankfully I survived,” he added.

All the injured persons have been shifted to Capital Hospital here in ambulances while those critical were shifted to SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack. At least three fire tenders were pressed into service to douse the flames at the spot.

Meanwhile, Twin City Police Commissioner Sudhansu Sarangi informed that one of the two CNG storage tanks exploded causing the fire to spread. In order to prevent any further mishap, the entire stretch between Raj Bhawan and Capital Hospital has been cordoned off by the police.

Bhubaneswar DCP Umashankar Dash said people nearby the spot of the blast have been vacated to safer places.

(Edited By Devbrat Patnaik)

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Bhubaneswar: Explosion Rocks Filling Station Near Raj Bhawan, Many Feared Injured