Octel accident revives worries about pollution from chemical fires

The cause of a serious chemical leak and fire at Associated Octel's lead additives works at Ellesmere Port, the UK chemical industry's third major accident within 20 months, is under investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). The incident has again highlighted the pollution risks posed by the lack of containment facilities for fire-fighting water at many chemical plants - a gap which will soon be filled by official guidance which will force the industry to invest in improved fire prevention and water containment measures.

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