Fire Crews Called to Chemical Leak

Poisonous Gas Fumes

09.06.2008

 

 

Poisonous gas fumes leaking from chemical waste drums in an industrial estate near York caused fire crews from across North Yorkshire to be scrambled to the scene.

Emergency appliances from York, Harrogate and Ripon attended the incident at the Marston Moor Business Park in Tockwith on Thursday.

After the area was safely cordoned off a trailer loaded with 26 200-litre drums of chemical waste was removed to the edge of the business park.

Experts were able to identify the substance as antimony slag which is capable of producing toxic and flammable gases when it comes into contact with air.

The drums were made safe by fire crews who left the owners to arrange specialist removal of the load.

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David Urpeth from law firm Irwin Mitchell said: "Industrial accidents involving chemical leaks can prove serious or fatal for both workers and local residents.

"Companies making, storing or handling chemicals must do so safely.

"Sadly, I have represented many people who have been injured or killed in work accidents."

Mr Urpeth represented over 75 workers and many residents who were injured in the 2001 blast at the Killingholme refinery when over 170 tonnes of liquid petroleum gas caught fire. Conoco-Phillips, who owned the plant, was eventually fined £1m for breaching health and safety regulations after the explosion at its Humber refinery.