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HindustanTimes Wed,26 Nov 2014

Gas leak: 22 taken ill

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, October 20, 2013
First Published: 00:16 IST(20/10/2013) | Last Updated: 00:17 IST(20/10/2013)

At least 22 people faced problem in breathing and complained of irritation in eyes after chlorine gas leaked from cylinders on the road dividing Sectors 15 and 24 here on Saturday.

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Apart from locals, police personnel and fire brigade employees were also affected by the gas leak. All were rushed to the Sector-16 general hospital.

The incident occurred when damaged chlorine gas cylinders, loaded in a truck of the municipal corporation (MC), were being taken for disposal. The cylinders started leaking on the road dividing Sectors 15 and 24, after which commuters felt irritation in eyes.

Fire tenders and police officials were rushed the spot on receipt of the information. The road was blocked for about an hour from 12.30pm and water was thrown with pressure on cylinders to control the gas leak.

The rescue team, including fire brigade employees Dinesh, Sunil, Harjinder and Lal Bahadur, and assistant sub-inspector Narinder Singh were also rushed to the general hospital as they were also affected by the gas leak.

Some passers-by, including Ganesh, Ashok and Harminder Singh, complained of dizziness and were taken to the hospital.

After about two hours, all the 22 were discharged from the Sector-16 hospital after treatment. The Chandigarh police have lodged a daily diary report (DDR) in this regard.

A probe has been initiated to fix responsibility and to ascertain that how the transportation of the leaking cylinders was delayed, which caused trouble to people.

Fire brigade sources said they got a call from police control room informing about the gas leakage. Six fire tenders were pressed into service.

The chlorine cylinders are stored at water works pump in Sector 15.Chlorine gas is used for purifying drinking water.

An MC official said the chlorine cylinders were being taken to Sector 31, when gas started leaking.

Dr Deepak Bakshi, senior medical officer, at the Sector-16 hospital, said, "As many as 22 patients reached the hospital complaining of breathlessness and irritation in eyes. They were given medical aid and were kept under observation. They were discharged after about two hours." 

Municipal corporation chief engineer SK Bida said, "The cylinders were kept in the Sector 15 store when gas leak was noticed. These were being taken to Sector 31 for disposal in a tank at the MC's special treatment plant. We had to defuse a cylinder on way as it started leaking heavily."

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