Six leaks filled mosque with cooking gas
Six leakages in gas pipeline and around 17 percent of the mosque air filled with methane gas caused the blast in Narayanganj, finds the probe of fire service and civil defence.
The probe report mentioned electric sparks ignited the gas.
The explosion claimed 31 lives and several others sustained serious burn injuries.
"Blast happened due to gas leakage. After the accident, we found around 17 percent of the mosque was filled with methane gas," Brig Gen Md Sazzad Hussain, director general of fire service and civil defence, told The Daily Star yesterday.
He said the committee would submit the report on Thursday and they were now finalising the report.
The four-member probe body, led by Lt Col Zillur Rahman, director (operations and maintenance of fire service and civil defence), was formed on September 4.
The committee talked to locals, the authorities of Titas Gas Ltd, the mosque committee, and the power supply division to unearth the reason behind the blast.
According to the investigation, the explosion took place when the methane gas came in contact with electric sparks. It was not air condition blast.
The probe body found evidence of gas bubbling inside the mosque and also at the mosque gate.
Lt Col Zillur said Titas Gas workers dug the adjacent area of the mosque and found six leakages and the gas accumulated in the mosque.
"We did not get any other reason except the gas leakage," he said when asked whether they found any negligence of Titas Gas.
Titas Gas suspended eight of its officials and staffers in connection with the blast.
The fire service and civil defence official said they rushed to the spot within 20 minutes after the blast and found the presence of methane gas there.
Asked whether they had any evidence that the mosque committee talked to the Titas Gas authorities about the leakage, he said, "We did not get any evidential documents in favour of the mosque committee's claim."
The blast took place in Pashchim Talla Baitus Salat Mosque after Esha prayers on September 4. At least 39 people suffered burn injuries and of them, 31 have died so far.
The Criminal Investigation Department is also probing the incident. It also primarily suspected that the explosion happened due to leaky gas pipes.