California personal injury – Ammonia leak at California plant injures 24!

Legal news for California personal injury attorneys. Ammonia leak injures twenty-four people.

California personal injury attorneys alert- Columbus Salame plant ammonia leak injured two dozen people.

San Francisco, CA—An ammonia leak at the Columbus Salame plant left two-dozen people injured. The leak was reported at 5:30 a.m. on Friday, August 28, 2009, as reported by the San Francisco Chronicle.

According to South San Francisco fire officials, sixteen people were treated and released at the scene of the anhydrous ammonia leak. Eight other injured people were transported by emergency medical services (EMS) crews to local hospitals for observation and treatment. The anhydrous ammonia reportedly is used in the cooling system of the plant, which cools the meat after it has been processed. A worker apparently discovered the leak on the roof top, where the worker is conducting work to update the plant’s ammonia system. It is unknown what actually caused the leak, but it has since been capped. Police officials closed nearby roads due to the hazardous leak, and evacuated the area. Hazardous-materials crews, and fire fighters from Daly City, Brisbane, Burlingame, and San Mateo fire departments all responded to the toxic leak. A decontamination tent also was reportedly erected to treat individuals exposed to the anhydrous ammonia, which affects the respiratory system. Investigators are currently trying to determine what caused the ammonia leak.

According to Wikipedia ammonia is colorless, and has a suffocating pungent odor. At small amounts, ammonia can cause irritation of the nose, eyes, and throat. At higher exposure levels ammonia can cause coughing, choking, swollen throat or chemical burns to the lungs, and even death.

Legal News Reporter: Nicole Howley-Legal news for personal injury lawyers practicing in California.