Chlorine gas leak at Massachusetts company causes mass hysteria among workers
25 June 2018
Local media reported that 29 workers received emergency treatment after suspected chlorine gas leaks at the Thermal Circuits plant in Salem, Massachusetts, on June 24. After an initial leak and evacuation, a second incident caused some workers to feel nauseous and light-headed leading to mass hysteria as they ran towards the exit, according to Salem Fire Department Deputy Chief Alan Dionne.
A total of 18 were admitted to hospitals around Salem, while 11 were transported to medical facilities in nearby areas. There were no fatalities.
Chlorine gas can cause severe stinging of the eyes and a burning sensation in the throat and chest. Prolonged exposure to the toxic gas can lead to extreme burns in the throat and severe lung problems.
A Hazmat team said that there was no trace of chlorine detected inside the building shortly after the second evacuation, but Dionne said authorities would continue monitoring the site throughout the night just in case.
Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll told city residents that there was no cause for panic as health officials had tested the area near the plant and found it safe to enter or walk by.
Thermal Circuits is a manufacturer of surface heaters, air heaters, molded heaters, heater assemblies, and infrared panel emitters.