Three gas company workers were released on bail yesterday after being questioned over the Aug. 15 gas explosion in New Taipei City’s Sindian District (新店) that killed two people and injured more than a dozen others.
The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office summoned the three Shin Shin Natural Gas Co technicians, identified by their surnames of Tsai (蔡), Chen (陳) and Yeh (葉), and later ordered their release on bail in relation to offenses against public safety and negligence.
Tsai and Chen are inspectors who entered the high-rise building a day before the fatal explosion in response to calls from residents about a strong smell of gas.
They were released on NT$300,000 bail each.
The bail for Yeh, who is in charge of regular maintenance and repairs, was set at NT$200,000.
Prosecutors’ Office spokesman Huang Mo-hsin (黃謀信) said that to ease public concerns about safety, the office has published facts about the case based on what he called “objective on-site examinations.”
Huang said that tests on pipes in an apartment on the third floor of the building — where a 59-year-old woman and her 16-month-old grandson were killed — showed no leaks, although an outer pipe on the balcony showed signs of leakage and corrosion.
He said that although the gas stove in the kitchen of the apartment was turned on, it has a safety device that automatically shuts off the gas supply and “therefore has no possibility of leakage.”
Huang said that prosecutors are to continue investigating to determine who was responsible.