After new raids, Petron warns anew on dangers of using fake LPG products

Published December 31, 2020, 5:00 AM

by Myrna M. Velasco

The coming New Year must usher in renewed hope, hence, Filipino households are being warned anew on the dangers of using counterfeit or illegally refilled liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders in preparing their food for the forthcoming celebrations.

Following a recent raid that led to confiscation of counterfeit products, leading oil firm Petron Corporation cautioned that illegally refilled LPG tanks are still very much circulating in the market, and these are lurking menace that could imperil people’s lives and properties if they are not circumspect in buying or patronizing cooking fuel products.

The oil firm noted that even its LPG brands – Petron Gasul and Fiesta Gas – “are often replicated or illegally refilled by unauthorized LPG refillers.”

Petron thus reminded consumers that these fraudulent reproduction “do not undergo proper safety and quality checks, presenting a threat to the safety of consumers.”

On December 18 and 22 this year, the oil firm reported that there had been four separate raids carried out in Albay, Legaspi City, Pasay City and Quezon City and roughly hundred of fake Petron Gasul and Fiesta Gas cylinders had been seized.

Based on the calculation of the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG), the value of counterfeit LPG cylinders captured could run up to more than P200,000.

In the forbidden replication of Petron LPG products, the company stated that “the owners of the illegal outlets were arrested and the products confiscated as a result of the entrapment operations.”

Similar raids were also undertaken earlier this year, as the oil firm emphasized that the law enforcement agencies “tightened their watch against illegal sources of LPG products in the market.”

Petron stressed “we cannot emphasize enough the importance of sourcing LPG cylinders only from authorized sellers,” emphasizing that “doing otherwise endangers the safety of the public and also shortchanges them because these cylinders are of substandard quality and often under-filled.”

Given the apparent risks of utilizing fake and unlawfully traded LPG products, Petron prompts Filipino consumers anew “to use only authentic LPG products” especially during the holiday season.

In Petron’s case, it apprised consumers that it strictly follows the standards set forth by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), primarily on wall thickness, weld integrity and valve fitting.

“To distinguish between a legitimate and a fake Petron Gasul cylinder, customers must look for a laser-printed quality seal with a unique QR-code, certifying that the cylinder has passed through rigorous safety and quality testing,” the oil firm emphasized.

Additionally, Petron fiercely advised consumers against using LPG-filled butane canisters, which it classified to be “both dangerous and illegal.” Instead, it offers its 2.7-kilogram Fiesta Gas LPG brand variant as alternative.

Philippine authorities, including the Department of Energy, Bureau of Fire Protection, PNP and DTI, have constantly indicated that many fire incidents in the country have been attributable to knock-off or the illegally refilled LPG cylinders, which are often bought by consumers only because they are retailed at cheaper prices; but the trade-off could be lost lives and damage to properties.