Chemicals named in Somersham factory spray scare

A MIXTURE of weed-killing chemicals was at the centre of a chemical incident which left three Somersham factory workers in hospital, it has been revealed.

Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service have identified two substances involved in the October 14 incident which led to the evacuation of Phoenix Door Panels at West Newlands Industrial Estate.

The chemicals – Diflufenican Technical and 3 4-dimethyl-2 6-dinitro-n-(1-ethyl propyl) aniline – were being used for crop-spraying on a neighbouring field, when the fumes allegedly caused workers to feel nauseous.

Firefighters and a hazardous area response team from the East of England Ambulance Service were called to the scene. Three people were taken to Hinchingbrooke Hospital and discharged later that day.

According to data provided by the National Chemical Emergency Centre, both chemicals carry hazard warnings.

If symptoms are experienced through inhalation of either chemical, the advice is to seek fresh air and medical help.

Phoenix Door Panels director Tracy Peck said a report with full details of the chemicals had been passed to employees. A Health and Safety Executive spokesman declined to comment on the fire service data.