Five injured in gas leak at Chek Lap Kok

PUBLISHED : Friday, 29 March, 2002, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 29 March, 2002, 12:00am

Five men were injured - one critically - when a large volume of carbon dioxide spilled from a fire-fighting system at Chek Lap Kok's Super Terminal One yesterday.

Two workers from an engineering company, aged 40 and 55, were inspecting the automatic carbon dioxide system inside the terminal's dangerous goods store in Chun Wan Road when the incident happened at midday.

Chek Lap Kok fire station commander Wong Ting-tung said a metal plug in one of the carbon dioxide cylinders flew off hitting the older man's head.

'Both workers collapsed to the floor when the gas spilled out from the system.

'Two employees from Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals and a security guard saw the white smoke and entered the dangerous goods store to rescue the pair,' he said.

The older worker lost consciousness when he left the room and his colleague felt dizzy after inhaling the gas. The three rescuers, aged between 37 and 51, complained of feeling unwell.

About 10 workers were evacuated from the area and firefighters and police were called in to cordon the area off.

All five men were taken to Princess Margaret Hospital where the 55-year-old worker was in a critical condition. His colleague was listed in a serious condition. The three others were still under observation last night.

Mr Wong said no dangerous goods were stored in the room at the time of the incident. He said the room was sealed off for about two hours for examination.

The Labour Department is investigating the cause of the incident.