Suffolk factory chemical leak: Haverhill site evacuated

Cornelius Specialties Image copyright Google
Image caption The company said its spillage containment system was "unable to manage the entire volume"

A factory had to be evacuated after a tank containing a chemical leaked on to a public road and footpath.

Ten fire crews were called to Cornelius Specialties in Rookwood Way, Haverhill, Suffolk, at 12:18 BST, after a chemical leaked from an 8,000-litre tank.

Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service advised the public to avoid the area while firefighters dealt with the incident. The road was also closed off by police.

The company said no-one was harmed in the incident.

A statement from Cornelius Group, which makes products for the lens and dental industries, described the chemical as a post-processing effluent which was water-based in nature.

"A valve failure on a tank containing effluent material led to the spillage which spread to the public drainage system," it added.

"We have an underground containment system on site but unfortunately due to speed of flow the system was unable to manage the entire volume.

"We are working with authorities and emergency services to manage the situation and establish how the incident occurred."

The East of England Ambulance Service said it treated one person who complained of skin irritation.

Suffolk Fire and Rescue said the incident was "brought under control" just before 18:30.

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