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‘Chemical Disaster’: NDMA, NDRF, AIIMS on Vizag Gas Leak Tragedy

The workers were preparing for the reopening of the plant on Thursday when gas started leaking in the early hours.

Updated
India
2 min read
An affected woman being taken for treatment at King George Hospital after the gas leak in RR Venkatapuram village, Visakhapatnam.
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Director General of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), member of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and Director of All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) addressed the media on the gas leak that took place in Vishakhapatnam on Thursday, 7 May.

At least eleven people, including two children, have died after a chemical gas leakage at the plant in Visakhapatnam's RR Venkatapuram village in Andhra Pradesh at around 3 am on Thursday.

“We are mobilising special technical support to help the medical practitioners in the area,” said NDMA Director SN Pradhan.
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“It is a chemical disaster the response requires expertise on chemical side, on chemical management side, on medical side as well as on the evacuation side. Prime Minister took stock of what across the board response should be: National Disaster Management Authority,” NDMA added.

NDRF stated, “The Regional Response Centre was informed late night and reached in half an hour. The team neutralized the situation, an evacuated the people from the village. Door-to-door search was also done.”

NDRF added that people were evacuated in RR Venkatapuram village within a radius of 3 kms.

‘No Long-Term Effects As Per Data’

Meanwhile, AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria said, “Thee are two main effects, respiratory and CNS, there are no symptoms of it yet in the patients, but they are being monitored.”

He added, “Avoid exposure. The gas doesn't stay for a long time. If you feel irritation in your eyes, wash them. If you feel irritation on your skin, clean it with a tissue. And if you don't feel well, contact health authorities immediately."

“Chances of long-term effects are less, because the compound metabolizes and leaves the body quickly. It is acute exposure rather chronic exposure. However, we will have to follow up and see.”
Randeep Guleria, AIIMS Director

NDRF added that in the morning there were around 20-25 critical patients, and they are now stable.

“Around 5,000 tonnes of polymer were kept in two tanks and was in the storage system. There was an automatic chain reaction because it is polymer. Due to that heat, vapours came out,” Swaroop Rani, ACP West Visakhapatnam to The Quint.

The workers were preparing for the reopening of the plant on Thursday when gas started leaking in the early hours.

“Spoke to officials of MHA and NDMA regarding the situation in Visakhapatnam, which is being monitored closely. I pray for everyone's safety and well-being in Visakhapatnam,” tweeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy also met those hospitalized at King George hospital.

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