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July 7, 2012

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Toxic fumes poison 69 workers

SIXTY-NINE workers from a company in Qingpu District were poisoned and sent to hospital yesterday after inhaling toxic fumes at a building that was being decorated.

The district government said two workers who were still having trouble breathing were in hospital for observation. The others had been discharged as of yesterday afternoon.

The victims said their eyes teared up and they felt pain in their throats.

Authorities suspected toxic substances were contained in the waterproof paint that was being used to decorate the roof of Haoyuan Bio-Tech Co in Zhaoxiang Town.

The harmful chemicals could have evaporated due to the heat and poisoned the workers, according to district authorities.

Police and firemen wearing masks cordoned off the company compound. The district government said more than a dozen fire trucks arrived on the scene to spray water on the building to dilute the fumes and prevent them from spreading.

Concrete powder was also used to cover the roof. Authorities added the roof would be dismantled quickly.

The environmental watchdog reported the gas concentration had been reduced as of late yesterday afternoon.

District authorities said they are still investigating the case.


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