Monday, 28 March 2011

Unsafe gas in Garston ? - Question for Environment Committee

I've got a question in to the Council's environment committee later this week (Wednesday 30th) about a release of gas from a plant run by Veolia in Garston under the bridge.

It happened last week and the gas was obvious to people living along St Mary's/Aigburth Road.

It sounds like Veolia did the right thing when it happened, by shutting things down.  But I am worried that there may not be a process for warning local people when there are incidents like this.

It was a local resident who passed on the information and who obtained some informatioin from Veolia

The text of my question is below

"On Thursday 24th March there was a release of vapour from the Veolia (solvent recovery) plant based under the bridge in Garston. Fumes were seen quite some way away, including off Aigburth Road.

According to local residents Veolia has said the following:

1. A vessel in their plant over pressurised

2. The safety valve ('bursting disc') on this vessel operated as required and opened to release pressure

3. The fumes released were a combination of steam and 'mostly' ethanol

4. They informed the Environment Agency (EA), the police and the fire brigade

5. The EA visited and were satisfied that the company had taken the proper action

I am not sure that Veolia have any contingency plans for informing local residents when there is a problem and when they should perhaps close windows.

What can Liverpool City Council do to make sure that there is a proper process for protecting residents in Garston, particularly those very near the location?"

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