At least two people died and four were hospitalised on Tuesday morning after toxic gas leaked from a pharmaceutical plant of a company in Andhra Pradesh’s Visakhapatnam city, ANI reported. The pharmaceutical unit was shut down immediately as a precautionary measure.
The leakage of benzimidazole gas was reported from a chemical plant owned by Sainor Life Sciences at the Jawaharlal Nehru Pharma City, located in the city’s Parwada area, according to News18. At least 30 people were working at the unit at the time of the gas leak, which took place on Monday night. A case has been registered against the company management, said city police commissioner RK Meena, according to Hindustan Times.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy has enquired about the accident. “The accident is confined to a department in which there is a reactor,” read the statement by the Chief Minister’s Office, according to NDTV. “There is no need to panic. The district collector has ordered an inquiry into the matter.”
Uday Kumar, police inspector, Parwada, said the situation was under control now. “Two persons who died were workers and were present at the leakage site [at the time of the incident],” he told ANI. “Gas has not spread anywhere else.” The deceased have been identified as shift in charge Ravi Narendra from Tenali in Guntur district and chemist Gowri Shankar from Vizianagaram district.
This is the second such accident in the district in less than two months. On May 7, at least 11 people, including a child, had died when toxic gas leaked from the chemical plant of a company. The gas leak had occurred at the LG Polymers Plant at RR Venkatapuram near Naiduthota area and reportedly spread over a radius of about 3 km, affecting at least five villages.