Saturday 29 April 2017

Hundreds evacuated and 50 injured at Hamburg Airport amid toxic air alert

Travellers wait outside the Hamburg, northern Germany, airport Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017 after after several people were injured by an unknown toxic that likely spread through the airportsÄô air conditioning system. (Axel Heimken/dpa via AP)
Travellers wait outside the Hamburg, northern Germany, airport Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017 after after several people were injured by an unknown toxic that likely spread through the airportsÄô air conditioning system. (Axel Heimken/dpa via AP)
Firemenare seen outside the Helmut Schmidt airport in Hamburg, Germany February 12, 2017. The airport was closed after unknown substance was found during security check. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer
Firemen are seen outside the Helmut Schmidt airport in Hamburg, Germany February 12, 2017. The airport was closed after unknown substance was found during security check. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

German firefighters evacuated hundreds of passengers at Hamburg Airport after 50 people were injured by an unknown toxin that likely spread through the airport's air conditioning system.

The German news agency, dpa, reported that 50 people complained about breathing problems and burning eyes on Sunday.

It is understood that the incident occurred in an area where passenger luggage is scanned by security staff.

Fire crews decided who needed to be taken to hospital - are trying to determine the source of the discharge and the nature of the corrosive substance.

Those who were evacuated from the Hamburg Airport had to wait outside the terminals in sub-zero temperatures.

The airport could not immediately be reached for comment.

All flights were halted for several hours due to the evacuation, airport spokeswoman Karen Stein said.

"We have cancelled all flight at least until 2pm and most parts of the airport have been evacuated," she said.

A spokeswoman for the airport said flights had resumed as of 1.45 p.m. (1245 GMT).

According to live flight tracking website flightradar24.com some flights were diverted to other airports after the incident.

Additional reporting by Reuters

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