Acid leaks on to protected marshland
Saturday 20 February 1999
A large amount of hydrochloric acid was discharged onto Greenabella marsh on Teesside from a factory belonging to Tioxide, an ICI subsidiary, which makes titanium dioxide, an ingredient of cosmetics. The marsh is part of the Tees and Hartlepool Foreshore and Wetlands Site of Special Scientific Interest, a network of pools, marsh and mudflats in the Tees estuary, a major wintering place for wading birds.
Greenabella marsh is an important haven for birds such as the curlew, redshank, teal and shelduck. It was feared the local invertebrate life, the shrimps, molluscs and worms on which the birds feed, could become contaminated with the acid and put the birds themselves at severe risk.
The acid is believed to have leaked into a stormwater drain and so out onto the marshland, which Tioxide owns.
The company itself discovered the leak and alerted the Environment Agency, whose officers spent yesterday supervising the pumping of seawater onto the marsh, which by last night was successfully diluting the spill.
The work will go on over the weekend until the water acidity level returns to normal.
Steve Hardy of the Environment Agency said it was one of the worst incidents he had attended. "The water was as acidic as you can get," he said.
Yesterday afternoon the first signs of dead invertebrates were seen but no dead birds had been found.
- 1 Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Pro-Russian rebel 'admits to shooting down plane'
- 2 Israel has discovered that it's no longer so easy to get away with murder in the age of social media
- 3 Israel-Gaza conflict: The myth of Hamas’s human shields
- 4 Amy Winehouse unpublished 2004 interview: ‘Ten years from now I’ll be 30, so I’ll maybe have one baby’
- 5 Dutch paedophile club to fight their ban at the European Court of Human Rights
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
£49000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client is...
£48000 - £54000 per annum + Benefits package: Progressive Recruitment: My clie...
£35000 - £45000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: If you're pa...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP Business...