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Gas leak injures 25 at Wülfrath lacquer factory

AFP · 25 Aug 2008, 16:53

Published: 25 Aug 2008 16:53 GMT+02:00

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Police said a chemical byproduct, high purity dicyclopentadiene, had been released into the atmosphere from the plant in the town of Wülfrath, mixing with rain and humidity to create an oily substance.

Twenty-five people exposed to the leak complained of a burning sensation on their skin and in their eyes and throats and received treatment. A wide perimeter around the plant was evacuated. A police spokesman from the German state of North Rhine-Wesphalia said the environmental impact of the mishap was not immediately clear although it seemed only a small area had been exposed to the gas.

On August 23, 107 people took ill after being exposed to a toxic leak from a lacquer factory in the western city of Mönchengladbach. The cause of the incident was believed to be a fault in the factory's automated fire extinguisher system which was triggered after a small fire broke out, police said.

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