200 evacuated and 8 workers hospitalised following chemical leak

Editorial Staff

This chemical emergency was the second of its kind that occurred in Puerto Montt in a week.

Eight workers have been transferred to hospital with symptoms of poisoning following an ammonia leak from a cooling system at a Chilean salmon processing plant.

The incident occurred at a facility operated by coho farmer Salmones Aysén in Puerto Montt, located in the Los Lagos region.

Approximately 200 people were evacuated from the plant following the emergency.

Two fire units arrived at the scene as well as ambulances from a mutual insurance company. A police presence was also requested.

Sebastián Turconi, captain of the Second Company of the Puerto Montt Fire Department, confirmed that it was an ammonia leak from one of the plant’s cooling systems.

“It was a pipe that was working at low pressure, so the work was not difficult. It was possible to reach the leak, it was confined and finally it was possible to plug it,” said Turconi.

The facility was ventilated for several hours before allowing personnel to re-enter, reports Soy Chile.

This chemical emergency was the second of its kind that occurred in Puerto Montt this week. On Thursday, November 2, staff of the Multiexport company, located on Cardonal Avenue, were also evacuated due to an ammonia leak.

In October 2022, Chile’s Environmental Superintendancy (SMA) filed charges against Salmones Aysen for non-compliance with its environmental permit at one of the group’s growout sites in the Los Lagos region of the South American nation.


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