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Ammonia gas leaks at Ludhiana mineral water plant, 150 affected

Labourers working at plant and nearby factories complain of suffocation, irritation in eyes; 2 women faint, hospitalised.

punjab Updated: Oct 24, 2017 16:08 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Ludhiana
gas leak,ammonia gas leak,Ludhiana tragedy
A view of the mineral water unit where ammonia gas leak incident took place at Ajit Nagar in Ludhiana on Monday.(HT Photo)

A major tragedy was averted after ammonia gas leaked from a packaged water factory at Bhattiyan village on the National Highway -1 near Ladhowal on late Monday evening.

Around 150 labourers working at the plant and the surrounding factories complained of suffocation and irritation in eyes. Two women had even fainted and they were rushed to a nearby hospital.

The factory technician repaired the leakage shortly after it started, thereby helping in averting a big tragedy.

However, the effect of the gas remained in the area for at least one and a half hours.

Police reached the spot and started investigations. They called up the Punjab Pollution Control Board officials for further action.

Ladhowal SHO Varinderpal Singh said area residents reported the gas leak at ‘Prism — a unit of packaged mineral water’ at Bhattiyan. The factory is away from residential area.

He added that plant owner Taranjit Singh and manager Rakesh Pandey said the gas leaked from the condenser of ammonia plant, but the snag was fixed immediately.

Ajay Raj, a labourer, said he was working in the factory when he felt suffocation and irritation in eyes. “When I saw around, my co-workers were coughing badly and feeling chocked. We rushed outside the factory. There we saw labourers of other factories also being ousted. We then rushed to safe places.”

Notably, five people had died and 250 were hospitalised after a tanker carrying ammonia gas leaked in Doraha town in Ludhiana on June 14, 2015.

First Published: Oct 23, 2017 22:12 IST