Hazardous chemical spillage - Trumpington - Cambridge

Crews from Cambridge and St Neots, including the hazardous materials unit, were called to a hazardous chemical spillage at a chemical laboratory in Lensfield Road.

About 1kg of phosphorous pentachloride was spilt, reacting with the air to give off hydrogen chloride gas.

Firefighters set up a decontamination area in the laboratory and wore gas tight suits and breathing apparatus to help clear the materials and make the area safe.

Station Commander Paul Clarke, Incident Commander, said: “This was a particularly challenging incident because it was on the fourth floor of the laboratory and it was a particularly hazardous substance so safety was of prime importance. The tactical plan was agreed with the on-site specialists whose help was invaluable.”

Hydrochloric acid is harmful to the respiratory system and the eyes.

Firefighters were decontaminated at the scene and returned to their stations by 7.43pm.