At least five people have been killed and 1,000 hospitalised after a gas leak at a chemicals plant on the east coast of India, authorities said Thursday, warning the death toll would climb.
The gas leaked out of two 5,000-tonne tanks that had been unattended due to India’s coronavirus lockdown in place since late March, according to a local police officer.
Footage on Indian television channels showed people, including women and children, lying in the streets of Visakhapatnam, an industrial port city in the state of Andhra Pradesh.
An assistant police commissioner, in Visakhapatnam said, it was still too early in the morning, and there were people who were sleeping inside their homes (around the gas leak) and are unconscious,” Others were having breathing problems and complained of rashes on their body and sore eyes, it added.
“The authorities are checking (in houses) as well. We are working to get people to the hospital. They need oxygenation and fresh air.”
Ambulances were shown arriving to collect the injured on the roadside to take them to hospitals in the area.