Mystery blast rattles building in Kharadi

Mar 01, 2013, 02:44 IST | Anup Satphale

Gas emanating from garbage duct suspected to have caused 3 am blast in 12-storeyed Colonnade building

Residents 2-storeyed building in Kharadi area jumped out of their beds in the wee hours yesterday, after a blast resonated through the elevator shaft and shattered window panes and set of car alarms.

The blast happened at C2-wing of Colonnade Complex building, which comprises 47 flats. The police team investigating the case suspect the explosion was the result of methane gas emanating from the garbage duct and igniting due to electrical sparking in the lift shaft. Though no injuries have been reported, three doors leading to the elevator on different floors were damaged. The police are currently awaiting the forensic report to establish the cause behind the blast.

Wake up scare: A security guard at the Colonnade building in Kharadi shows the damage the 3 am blast caused to the elevator doors

The police suspect, gas may have accumulated in the garbage chamber and seeped into the fibre ducting extending from the ground floor, all the way up to the twelfth floor. The reason and cause behind it igniting is yet to be ascertained. After the blast, personnel from the Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS), Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS), Forensic Science Department, Fire brigade and police officials rushed to the scene.

“I was about to go to sleep and at around 3 am when I heard a loud bang and felt some vibrations. Initially I though it may have been an electricity transformer shorting out somewhere in the vicinity, but realised that the blast had happened in the building when I opened the front door of my flat and saw smoke coming from the lift,” said Vikas Phaphle, resident of 11th floor of C2-wing.

Seventh floor resident Amit Sharma said, “My wife heard a commotion and thought some quarrel was going on. When we opened the door, we saw residents evacuating their homes and were informed that there had been a blast and fire in the building. While going down the stairs we saw flames coming out of garbage duct.”

Manoj Patil, DCP, Zone IV reached the spot soon after the blast. He said, “As per primary observation, it seems that gas emanating from the garbage may have ignited due to electrical sparking after accumulating in the lift duct. The intensity of the blast was quite high, but fortunately no one was in or around the shaft when it happened. Forensics and other teams are investigating the matter to establish the cause.”

PA Ghosarwadkar, from the regional forensic team said, “Samples have been collected from various spots and we will carry out tests once those samples are handed over to us by the police.”

A team from B U Bhandari, the builder currently looking after the maintenance of the society, also reached to the spot shortly after the incident. Sandeep Arora, marketing head of the B U Bhandari said “As per information we have received, the blast happened at around 3 am. The police are investigating and will soon find out what caused it.”  

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