Editor: Rana Qaisar   
Founding Editor: Shafqat Munir   

CNG fitted vehicles or ‘Moving Bombs’: 

14 Julie 2011 12:29:37

CNG fitted vehicles or ‘Moving Bombs’:

A serious threat to lives of twin cities residents

Pakistan is the sole leading country in the world where majority of vehicles are running by Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and the first country across the world having huge number of CNG-fitted vehicles.

No doubt it was a good initiative to convert the vehicles to CNG from Petrol because then it was inexpensive. The campaign started during the reign of President Musharaf aiming at decreasing the global warming while the temperature of this earth was increasing rapidly.

It was aimed to improve the environmental conditions and also control the pollution to some extent while on the other hand it has a great damage for the vehicle itself because the vehicles which are using CNG cannot run for long time as compared to those running on petrol. However, CNG was also considered somewhat cheaper and affordable.
But the CNG cylinders or kits are also dangerous as it been reported from so many areas that incidents of blowing up occurred so many times.


These CNG-fitted vehicles are moving bombs which can cause destruction any time because of their sensitivity. Recently such cases have been reported from different areas of Pakistan. The Rawalpindi bus CNG cylinder explosion that took place on Tuesday along Islamabad Highway killing 15 and injuring many is a case in point.

People are really worried about the terrible prevailing situation of blowing up of the CNG-kits present in almost all the vehicles moving on the roads and these can blow up anytime because of the rising in the temperature the gas molecules start colliding more rapidly while also colliding the wall of the cylinder and the pressure inside the cylinder increases to high level which cannot be controlled by the cylinder’s wall because every cylinder has its capacity limits like they can withstand a pressure of 300. If it exceeds further than that, it comes out of the cylinder in the form of a blast while the gas has no other way to leave its place but had to broke that apart and make a place for them to leave.

Muhammad Imran a passenger said, “While moving in different public transport vehicles, I have noticed that most of the time the smell of gas pesters people while I also had complained to the drivers as well but they just do not bother to even accept anyone’s suggestion if someone is trying to tell something. But mostly they just make excuses that when the petrol mixes with the gas during conversion of vehicle from gas to petrol or vice versa.”

So there is a precaution that the CNG-kits need a Hydraulic test after every five years which make a person know about the condition of the cylinder.

While talking to this agency Muhammad Zaman, Secretary General of CNG Association of Pakistan, said, “The reason why the CNG-kit blasts occur is that firstly the cylinders are not original while these are local ones which can withstand 200-300 PSI and on the other hand genuine CNG-cylinder’s filling pressure is 3000 PSI as compared to 200 of the local one. While in Pakistan we are allowed to keep and fill the CNG at 200 bar pressure at CNG stations and it has a lifetime of five years. So it is not possible that the genuine kit blows up normally while the average lifetime of any kit is 100 years.”


“The cylinders which blow up are oxygen cylinders, LPG cylinders and self-modified cylinders which are fitted in unlicensed workshops while they are imported cylinder which they sell on low-price.

The drivers do not get their cylinder checked while they just think of the money and only money but do not want to spend some money on their vehicle’s safety,” he added.


Mr. Shakeel General Manager HDIP said, “We are ready to test the cylinders of all the vehicles, whoever comes to us for test, we surly do but if people are not coming for Hydraulic test of their CNG-kits then who is to be blamed? The average time of the Cylinder kit test is 5 years but people do not get it tested for years. This is the work of OGRA while they are not doing their duties so these things will happen in future as well.” 
This is a very serious issue and needs to be addressed on war footings while this can bring disaster and due to the carelessness of the issue can make the lives of dozens of passengers at risk. This is the time that the authorities, civil society, media should do something to avert this menace of blasting in the country while starting the public awareness campaign. Pakistan will become a hell if the practice of blowing up persists because there are numerous vehicles present in our country having CNG-kits fitted in them that might all turn into bombs to blow up the whole country.