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Supply crisis averted in Mumbai as oxygen-making plant’s technical glitch resolved in time

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MUMBAI AVERTED a major tragedy of running out of oxygen supply on Sunday.

Linde India, one of the two manufactures from where the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and suppliers to the private hospitals replenishes medical oxygen, reported a technical glitch in their system on Sunday morning.

The liquid oxygen manufactured at the plant is filled into jumbo storage tankers, from where it is transferred to transportation tankers, which travel to distributors and suppliers.

For liquid medical oxygen to be transferred from storage tankers to transportation tankers, a minimum level has to be maintained.
The jumbo storage tankers at the Linde Plant had dropped below the specified level on Sunday morning.

“There was a delay in oxygen supply this morning. Today, at their (Linde) main storage facility, the oxygen had dropped below the pumping level. To maintain the level, tankers were supplied from Jamnagar. Had the problem been not resolved in the morning, our supply would have been affected tonight,” said P Velrasu, additional municipal commissioner.

Municipal Commissioner I S Chahal said, “All issues related to oxygen supply under the BMC stands resolved now. The oxygen supply situation is normal.”

On Sunday, Mumbai recorded 5,542 new cases and 64 deaths. Mumbai currently requires 235 metric tonnes of medical oxygen daily. The city currently has 78,775 active Covid-19 cases, of which 10,182 are on oxygen support. Total 999 oxygen beds are available as per the BMC’s dashboard.

Oxygen storage is currently replenished every day. While municipal hospitals have their storage facilities, private hospitals have their tie-ups with the suppliers directly.

The private hospitals also approach the BMC in case of emergency. Several private hospitals and nursing homes have been facing delay in the oxygen supply. On Wednesday, a shortage of oxygen supply at private-run HJ Doshi Ghatkopar Hindu Mahasabha Hospital in Ghatkopar had caused a scare for 61 Covid-19 patients.

As per the latest guideline, hospitals should place a request for oxygen supply at least 24 hours in advance.

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