Chemical spill drama at dock

TWENTY-five firefighters were called to Felixstowe Dock today when a barrel of explosive chemicals was knocked over and spilled.The accident happened at Landsdowne Distribution on Parkers Avenue at around 9.

TWENTY-five firefighters were called to Felixstowe Dock today when a barrel of explosive chemicals was knocked over and spilled.

The accident happened at Landsdowne Distribution on Parkers Avenue at around 9.20am and resulted in the evacuation of around 35 members of staff.

Three male members of staff were treated by the ambulance service after inhaling vapours.

Twenty firefighters and a chemical operation support unit attended the scene where the 45 gallon chemical drum was leaking.


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The chemical involved was tetrahydrofuran which is both flammable and a risk to health if inhaled. It is believed the chemical, a colourless liquid is used as a commercial solvent.

Should a fire have occurred toxic gases and vapours could have been released.

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Karl Rolfe, Assistant Divisional Officer from Suffolk Fire, said: “Around 25 firefighters attended which is the standard chemical incident response.We shut the site down and evacuated all staff.

“We had to look to make the site safe by evacuation and make the spillage safe by absorbing the chemical into an inert material and putting it in a drum for disposal.

“The vapours are explosive which could have resulted in fire.”

n. Were you caught up in today's drama? Contact The Evening Star newsdesk on 01473 324788.

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