Monday, December 26, 2011

Ministry of Public Security investigates vehicle fires

A motorbike got fire on Hanoi's Chuong Duong Bridge.

Major Do Van Son, head of the Firefighting and Rescue Department, said that the agency is waiting for official statistics of vehicle fires to analyze and seek reasons of fires.

Earlier, the Vietnam Vehicle Registration Agency asked bike producers to strengthen control of product quality. The agency will collect information to research and suggest to the Ministry of Transport measures to better control bike quality.

Many vehicle fires have been reported in Hanoi and other provinces. However, competent agencies have not made public the reasons.

While experts have yet to identify the causes of a series of motorbike fires that have recently occurred in different parts of the country, the latest of which happened in Da Nang City and BAc Ninh province yesterday, December 22.

In Da Nang, a Honda Wave S, which was just maintained two weeks ago, caught fire. The fire was quickly stamped out but the bike’s saddle was partly burnt.

In Bac Ninh, two Honda bikes Airblade and Wave Alpha of a family suddenly got fire at night. When the fire was detected, the two vehicles remained pile of iron.

After a series of fires of bikes, a new service has been launched: installing “anti-fire devices” to motorbikes.

Nguyen Dang Sang, the owner of a bike repair shop in Hanoi said he has launched the new service since December 15, and it was his own idea. Customers using the new service are mainly owners of Lead and Air Blade scooters, the brands of bikes that have burned without warning in the past several months, he said.

“Everyday we have 3-5 customers coming in for the new service that costs VND150,000-300,000 (US$7.1-14.2),” he said.

“The cause of recent motorbike fires may be the leak of petrol from its damaged pipe that caught a spark from the electric wire that was damaged, too. The damage might be caused by rats,” Sang said.

The solution to this, he said, is to cover the pipe and wires with copper and wrap special adhesive tapes around them to protect them from damage.

The Dream II motorbike that burned down in the explosion on December 1 in Bac Ninh, killing a woman and her 4-year-old daughter

He also said in most motorbikes, the petrol transmission pipe and the electric wires are arranged close to each other, so the protection of the pipe and wires is necessary.

After the customers have used the shop’s anti-fire service, if the pipe or a wire is still damaged by rats, causing a fire, then the shop would pay them compensation equal the value of their bikes, Sang said.

Dr. Phan Anh Tuan, a lecturer at Hanoi Polytechnic University, said relevant agencies has yet to issue a conclusion about the cause of the random fires of motorbikes in the past several months.

If the cause is found to be the same as suggested by the shop’s owner, the covering of electric wires is a proper solution, but the covering should be made for each wire, not for a cluster of wires.