Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 6°C

min temp: 2°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Stowmarket: PPG bosses apologises over chemical spills warnings

22:32 06 February 2013

Andrew Coxhead, process safety manager for PPG Industries, Stowmarket, addresses members of the public.

Andrew Coxhead, process safety manager for PPG Industries, Stowmarket, addresses members of the public.

Archant

ANGRY homeowners expressed concern about a paint firm’s safety practices last night following two chemical spills in the space of three days last year.

shares

Bosses from PPG Industries UK Ltd, based in Needham Road, Stowmarket, were forced to apologise at a public meeting after complaints about a lack of warning about the incidents.

Dozens of fire crews attended the chemical spills – of a solvent chemical and a hazardous liquid – in January last year which have since been investigated.

One person at the meeting said she was concerned about her husband’s health as he was working at the nearby Muntons factory on January 15, 2012, the day of the second spill which happened at about 2pm.

She said: “My main problem was, my husband is diabetic. On the day he was having his injection at about 5.45pm.

“We found about the incident at 2.30pm but my husband is not allowed a mobile phone on site. I could not get a message to him telling him not to have his insulin.

“He needs to eat within half an hour of the injection. I started to get quite worried, I knew he would soon be finishing.

“He was not allowed off the site. I was absolutely frantic, I could not get a message to him. He checked his phone just before he had his injection so he knew not to do it.” Last night other people also complained about not being able to hear a siren which sounded to warn after the spills.

Pedro Perez, site manager for PPG, where 385 people work, said: “I can only apologise for what happened last year. On the weekday the situation was manageable, but on the Sunday, I must admit it was difficult for everyone.

“I can only apologise for that. At the end of the day it’s an opportunity to improve Sunday’s communication.”

Andrew Coxhead, PPG’s process safety manager, said: “We had meetings with local businesses, including Muntons. What we recognised after this incident is that we had not set up full communication groups.

“I had the contact details but it did not grant 24-hour communication. We always want to improve, we held subsequent meetings with some businesses and set up a system which gives contact with all the local businesses.

“If we had an incident we would be able to get hold of them to keep them up dated.”

Mr Coxhead also said the siren would now sound more often during the first 30 minutes of an incident.

He said the firm had identified everything that could happened in an incident and had safety procedures in place, including automatic sprinklers, fire walls and their own fire tender.

shares

0 comments

Vernon Wilkes' Rolex.

A Rolex watch bought in Canada during the Second World War could sell for double its actual worth at auction next week because of a letter from a former owner.

Woodbridge fundraiser Mandy Hearle (dressed as Ping) launches her latest effort for Médecins Sans Frontières. It's called Books Without Borders and will involve stickers being placed on certain books at Woodbridge Library. Pictured with Helen Scrivener, library manager, Gerry Spiller, puppeteer, and Merryn Whatling

After a year of charity challenges, Woodbridge’s Mandy Hearle could be forgiven for putting her feet up.

Al Pulford by Angela Adams. Al is a friend and fellow freeleance photographer.

They may look other-worldly but these weird and wonderful images were produced surprisingly close to home.

Morrisons in Stowmarket.

The Morrisons supermarket in Stowmarket will close on April 3, it has been announced.

Bury St Edmunds Magistrates Court

Campaigners who fought to save two Suffolk magistrates courts voiced their disappointment last night as it was confirmed the centres will be closed.

The Drummer Boy statue outside the Suffolk Coastal District Council offices in Woodbridge.

A Suffolk town has chosen the new location for a statue it almost lost until campaigners stepped in.

Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust has been ranked in the worst performing hospitals in the UK for its cancer referrals

More than a quarter of cancer patients at an Essex hospital had to wait over two months for treatment at the end of last year.

Most read

Fred Olsen Travel Sale

cover

Click here to view
the Fred Olsen
Travel Sale

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24