Sunday 18 February 2018

Toxic fumes at recycling depot put 22 workers in hospital

Mark O'Regan

Mark O'Regan

EMERGENCY services rushed to an industrial estate after toxic fumes escaped, resulting in nearly two dozen people being hospitalised.

The drama began at Merrywell Business Park in Ballymount, west Dublin, when a gas cylinder was crushed and workers began to experience breathing difficulties.

Five units of the Dublin Fire Brigade, a decontamination unit and two units of the ambulance service arrived at 8.30am.

Firefighters tested the atmosphere while the area was sealed off by gardai.

Later, 22 workers were rushed to hospital after inhaling toxic fumes at the recycling depot.

It is understood two workers remained in hospital overnight as a precautionary measure.

The area was later declared safe.


The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) is carrying out a full investigation to determine the type of fumes inhaled by the workers.

"There was an aerosol of some sort in with the recycling material and something came loose from it, resulting in 22 people being taken to hospital as a precaution," sais Mark Ryan from the HSE.

"My understanding is that all but two were released from hospital."

A Dublin City Council spokeswoman said the industrial estate is co-owned by the four local authorities in Dublin.

It is currently leased to Panda Waste Management Solutions, which had no comment to make last night.

"They didn't realise they were crushing these canisters and staff started having respiratory problems," a Dublin Fire Brigade spokeswoman said.

"They couldn't find the origin of it to identify what it was, but there were no critical or serious casualties."

Irish Independent

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