Maidstone,Kent Wednesday 6th November 2019 Fifty-seven people are being treated for breathing difficulties, and a hospital has been put into “lockdown” after a suspected chemical leak in Maidstone.
Kent fire and rescue have sent a number of firefighters, hazardous material officers and DIM unit were all called to an industrial estate near Rumwood Green Farm, off Sutton Road, Langley just after 2.30pm on Wednesday.
A Kent Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said paramedics were looking after 57 people experiencing breathing difficulties.
By 5pm seven fire crews were at the site, working with hazardous material officers to establish what the chemical is. An air ambulance had landed nearby in a field near to the farm and residents and other businesses are being kept away from the effected area.
A spokesman confirmed the incident is contained to the site.
A police spokesman said: “”Kent Police was contacted by South East Coast Ambulance Service at 2.49pm regarding reports of a suspected chemical leak at a commercial site near Sutton Road, Langley, Maidstone. Officers are at the scene along with the Kent Fire and Rescue Service and ambulance crews, and are offering assistance where needed.”
A SECA spokesman’s said: Following the chemical incident in Langley near Maidstone, yesterday afternoon (Wednesday, 6 November), SECAmb is continuing to support those involved, although it has now stood down the Major Incident declared in response to this.
The Trust sent a number of emergency resources to the scene, including its Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) and the air ambulance, to assess and treat 48 patients.
Chris Stamp, the Strategic Commander overseeing the Trust’s response said: “This has been a protracted incident, involving large numbers of patients. To date, four patients have been transported by our crews to hospital – one to Pembury and more recently, three to Maidstone Hospital.
“I would like to offer my sympathy to those affected and to reassure the public that the Trust implemented well-rehearsed plans in response to this incident.”
“We are continuing to work with our emergency service and local authority partners to care for patients who have now been transferred to a rest centre, which includes a significant welfare and treatment plan for those unfortunately affected.
“I would like to extend my thanks and praise to all of the staff involved for their hard work and commitment during this incident.”