School block evacuated after gas leak
CLASSROOMS at an Essex school were evacuated this morning after a gas leak.
Fire crews sealed off a 10-classroom block at Philip Morant School, Colchester, after ammonia was reported leaking from a fridge shortly after 8am.
They sealed off the building in Rembrandt Way before crews, wearing protective suits, entered the staff room and removed the fridge.
Two members of staff were initially overcome by fumes but did not require hospital treatment.
Greg Keys, of Essex Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Ammonia is pretty unpleasant stuff, it can cause skin burns and dangerous to inhale.
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“Crews wearing gas tight suits have gone into the building and removed the fridge. It had already vented all of its gas but we wanted to get it away from the building so that the school can start to use the block again and get on with their day.
“The block has around 10 classrooms in and we made sure it was cleared. Because the leak happened before the school day started the building was largely empty and as pupils arrived for the day they were directed to other rooms.
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“The school did an excellent job of managing this incident.”