One dead, 13 hospitalised due to liquid chlorine gas leak in Erode

Damodharan was trying to clear a blockage in the liquid chlorine gas pipe, but died after inhaling the filtered gas.

The owner of a chemical factory died and 13 other people were hospitalized after a liquid chlorine gas leak near Chithode in the Erode district of Tamil Nadu on Saturday, December 11. According to police, Damodharan, the owner of Sridhar Chemicals, was tending to a blockage in the chlorine gas pipeline on Saturday afternoon when the gas reportedly leaked from the pipeline.

Damodharan (40) died at the scene after inhaling the poisonous gas, police sources said. As 13 other people working at the factory also breathed in the poisonous gas and faced breathing difficulties, they were rushed to Thanthai Periyar Government Headquarters Hospital in Erode.

Four fire and rescue service vehicles were deployed to rescue the factory workers. The team also worked quickly to control the leak before it spread.

Erode Collector H Krishnanunni and Police Superintendent Sasi Mohan visited the scene. The police have registered a case.

In a similar tragic incident in Vizag in May last year, 12 people were killed and around 585 fell ill after inhaling a styrene vapor leak. Due to the leak, the surrounding animals and plants were also affected.

In connection with the case, Visakhapatnam Police arrested LG Polymers CEO and Managing Director Sunkey Jeong, Technical Director DS Kim and Additional Director (Operations) Poorna Chandra Mohan Rao. The remaining employees who were arrested include a production team leader, three engineers, an operator, a night shift officer for operations and a night shift security officer, and a GPPS (general purpose polystyrene) in charge. The government formed a committee to investigate the case, which reported to Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy.

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