Natural Gas Explosion Levels Famous Hotel: Are You Protected?

A natural gas explosion has been identified as the primary cause in a deadly incident that took place last Friday. The famed Hotel Saratoga in Havana was scheduled to reopen within the week before a sudden burst took the lives of over 40 people. An additional 60 and counting were treated for injuries. The number of deaths and injuries continues to rise as emergency workers search the surrounding area for survivors. Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel would lament the tragedy as a “regrettable accident”. It’s a tremendous blow to the surrounding area and one that resounds a terrible but familiar tone across the world. We still do not hold the threat of natural gas to the same standard as we do smoke and carbon monoxide. It’s something that needs to be addressed as natural gas disasters like this have happened and continue to happen much closer to home.

Natural Gas Explosions Continue to Destroy Lives in the United States

You don’t need to look too far back to see the influence of natural gas disasters in the United States. On March 12th, 2012, a natural gas explosion obliterated two apartment buildings in East Harlem. The explosion took 8 lives. More than 50 others would be treated for injuries. The source for the explosion would later be identified as a gas main that happened to be 127 years old at the time. Another deadly natural gas explosion happened on March 26th, 2015 in the East Village of Manhattan. This time, a tampered gas line was responsible for completely destroying a series of surrounding buildings that resulted in 2 deaths, 19 injuries and more than 250 firefighters on site. Both incidents are terrifying for different reasons.

The East Harlem tragedy was a direct result of vulnerable infrastructure. Replacing aging infrastructure has been a hot topic for years, but it’s still something that has yet to be fully realized. It’s troubling to think of just how many of our older cities feature a dependence on these old gas lines. Think of the closest city to you. Now imagine just how tightly packed a line of buildings may be on any given street (often separated by mere inches if not touching). Now take into account the countless amount of lives that dwell in those buildings. The slightest malfunction or leak in any of these old pipelines creates a recipe for disaster that could take lives and destroy communities.

The Manhattan incident is another bleak reminder that we could be doing everything correctly in our homes and still feel the results of a natural gas explosion. The initial burst was triggered by someone attempting to siphon natural gas to other lines. The resulting explosion would level the surrounding buildings. The proximity of the buildings and the size of the explosion meant that it affected lives that had nothing to do with natural gas siphoning.

Early Detection Remains the Best Form of Protection Against Natural Gas

The threat of undetected natural gas continues to appear in media throughout the world. It’s evolved into such a problem internally that the state of Maine created its own Natural Gas Alarm Law. The subtle, unpredictable and extremely lethal properties of natural gas are still best defended with the installation of natural gas alarms. Early detection creates more time to escape a potential disaster. Universal Security Instruments is synonymous with reliable and fast sensing smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.

USI Natural Gas Alarms carry the same standard and are available as plug-in and hardwired detectors. USI Plug-In 2-in-1 Natural Gas & Carbon Monoxide Alarms offer dual protection from two unseen threats and can conveniently be placed into an outlet for instant operation. USI Hardwired Natural Gas Alarms are also available as 2-in-1 (Natural Gas & Carbon Monoxide) and 4-in-1 (Smoke, Fire, Carbon Monoxide & Natural Gas) for additional protection.


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