12 September 2008 15:55 [Source: ICIS news]
(recasts lead and updates throughout)
LONDON (ICIS news)--Firefighters have extinguished a blaze which broke out on a freight train transporting chemicals to France via the Channel Tunnel, operator Eurotunnel said on Friday.
The fire, which broke out on a train carrying a truck at 15:00 ?xml:namespace>
A total of 32 people on the train were led to safety through a service tunnel, while three other trains using the tunnel were immediately diverted back to
The Telegraph reported that death and serious injury were only averted because the explosion was in a lorry cut off from the others, and not a nearby one carrying the highly flammable chemical phenol.
None of the people on the train was thought to have been exposed to phenol, which causes severe chemical burns on contact and can quickly prove fatal if washing and medical treatment are not carried out quickly.
The accident raised questions about the transport of hazardous chemicals in enclosed environments.
The fire occurred about 11km (7 miles) from the French exit of the 50km tunnel. The tunnel was not expected to be reopened until Saturday at the earliest.
Listen to Will Beacham's account of his day transporting phenol in a special report on ICIS Radio
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