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Warehouse fire leads to chemical spill of printer ink

January 4, 2013

Fire at warehouse in India storing printer cartridges and ink leads to potentially harmful chemicals flowing into nearby river.

Times of India reports that a “mysterious blaze” at a warehouse which purportedly stocked “chemicals, ink cartridges, solvents, cosmetics, tarpaulin sheets, steel wires, printers’ ink and clothing material” has led to chemicals leaking into the nearby Hooghly river, sparking health concerns.

According to the article, the pigment ingredients that may have flowed into the river, such as p-Anisdine, are “extremely harmful if consumed”, with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health stating that if p-Anisdine is inhaled, absorbed into the skin, ingested or has contact with skin or eyes, it can lead to “headache, dizziness, cyanosis [and] blood disorders”.

There are also concerns over the potential environmental hazards of the chemical spill, with printer ink cinsisting of “volatile organic compounds”.

Action will be taken against the users of the warehouse by the Pollution Control Board should a report from the fire services department indicate that adequate. fire safety measures were not in place at the time of the blaze.

Gopal Bhattacharya, Additional DG, Fire Services, commented: “We are probing the cause of fire. Most of the goods stored there were inflammable. The green-coloured flame and the colour of the solvent released into the river do hint at the presence of chemicals and solvents. Things can be clear only after investigation is over.”

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