GALLERY: Eleven people treated for inhaling ammonia after leak at Wisbech factory

Moy Park factory Wisbech Moy Park factory Wisbech

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
1:53 PM

Eleven people needed treatment following an ammonia leak at a Wisbech factory.

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Moy Park factory WisbechMoy Park factory Wisbech

The Mount Pleasant Road area is no longer a threat to public safety following the ammonia leak at the Moy Park site on Wednesday morning.

A spokesman for Moy Park said: “A small ammonia leak was detected from a piece of refrigeration equipment at the factory.

“The piece of equipment is located in a controlled environment within the site plant room. A well rehearsed incident plan was followed, the fire service was called to the factory and the leak was quickly contained.

“An investigation into the cause of the leak is ongoing.”

Earlier the area had been cordoned off and residents asked to stay indoors and keep windows and doors shut while specialist fire fighters investigated the area.

Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service were called to the site at 8.39am.

By 10am the area was declared safe and no longer a threat to public safety.

An ambulance spokesman said: “The eleven people that we assessed had inhaled some of the fumes. Thankfully their conditions weren’t thought to be serious and they didn’t require hospital treatment.”

Firefighters wearing gas tight suits isolated the leak alongside on-site specialists while the crews remained on site to monitor the levels of ammonia.

The incident at the junction of Southwell Road and Edinburgh Drive, saw emergency services dispatch a rapid response car, two ambulances and the hazardous area response team.

On the Moy Park website the company outline their risk assessment and risk management strategies for dealing with on site hazards. Gas cylinders and fuel storage vessels are included in the policy but the firm has a number of materials in use that are classified as hazardous including ammonia gas.

The company’s stringent procedures include detailed risk analysis of the operations, advice on hazardous zoning requirements and a detailed action plan to improve controls across the site.

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