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Saudi refinery leak kills one

10 May 2013

On May 6 one person was killed in a gas leak incident at Saudi Aramco’s Jeddah refinery, according to the Saudi Press Agency. The incident took place during routine maintenance and that the “limited” leakage was immediately stopped and the accident has not affected the company’s operations.

It gave no further details about the incident but said an investigation into the cause of the leakage was underway.

An Aramco official in Jeddah said the leaked gas was poisonous hydrogen sulfide, which also nearly suffocated 11 other employees who were taken to a hospital.

On May 10 the Saudi Gazette report said residents close to Jeddah’s Petromin district regularly experienced leaks and toxic gas emissions from the refinery.

The newspaper quoted local residents who said they could smell gas emissions shortly before the leak took place, and the regular smell of gas and benzene was causing health problems in local children.

Many local residents said they are suffering from health problems due to environmental pollution caused by the refinery and a local desalination plant.

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