DOE calls for safe, fair practices in LPG industry

DAGUPAN CITY, Sept. 1 — The Department of Energy appealed to the business sector and the consuming public to uphold safe and fair practices in the sale of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).

Alex Rayos of the DOE- Retail Market Monitoring and Special Concerns Division, said the LPG industry is marred by safe and unfair practices which puts consumer safety at risk.

“To uphold consumer safety, we need to take immediate action against illegal and unsafe practices,” Rayos said during the multi-sectoral advocacy on the downstream oil industry held on Wednesday at the Star Plaza Hotel, this city.

Rayos said some of the most rampant illegal practices include illegal refilling, cylinder tampering, uncertified and illegally manufactured cylinders, use of scrap and dilapidated cylinders, underfilled cylinders and pilferage or ‘paihi’.

In the forum, a picture of an LPG tank was shown to the audience comprising dealers and retailers of LPP and LPG and they were asked to identify the fake and genuine tanks.

Scrapped and dilapidated LPG cylinders, Rayos added, usually have leaking valves, dents, rust, improper painting, corroded footring and bottom cap. These, he said, put public safety at risk.

Penalties for these illegal practices range from P1,000-10,000 including closure for the establishments, he said.

Rayos appealed to the public for a strong opposition to illegal activities in the LPG sector and at the same time encouraged those engaged in the business to work towards self-regulation. He asked them to coordinate with their respective local government units on the authority of DOE on the industry and the authority of the LGUs on the business.

Prior to the orientation for LPP/LPG stakeholders, a forum for LGUs and media practitioners was also conducted by Director Zenaida Monsada of the DOE –OIMB.

In the LPG industry, there are at least six bulk suppliers for the refillers while independent refillers number to 83. DOE statistics reflect about 1,500 dealers and 12,000 retail outlets of LPG in the country. (ANL/VHS-PIA 1 Pangasinan)

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