Toxic gas leak from industrial tanker truck kills 6 in India

NEW DELHI (AP) — A toxic gas leak from an industrial tanker truck killed at least six people on Thursday in western India, police said.

Another 25 people were hospitalized after they inhaled the gas in an industrial complex in Surat, a city in Gujarat state, said police officer Mahesh Patel.

The TimesNow news website reported that the gas leak occurred while the driver was trying to dump some waste in a drain from the parked tanker. Those affected were working or sleeping in a nearby factory.

Other details were not immediately available.

Negligence and lack of safety norms often contribute to such accidents in India.

In 2020, a gas leak in a South Korean-owned chemical factory killed 12 people and sickened hundreds in Vishakhapatnam, a port city in Andhra Pradesh state.

The gas that leaked from the factory was styrene, which is used to make plastic and rubber. Styrene gas is a neurotoxin and can immobilize people within minutes of inhalation.

A committee appointed by India’s top environmental court blamed “gross human failure” and lack of basic safety norms for the gas leak in the factory.

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