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Birds Eye factory evacuated after ammonia leak

PUBLISHED: 10:45 16 November 2019

The Birds Eye factory in Lowestoft. Picture: Mark Boggis

The Birds Eye factory in Lowestoft. Picture: Mark Boggis

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A Birds Eye factory was evacuated in the early hours of Saturday morning after a hazardous materials leak.

Gas Works Road in Lowestoft. PHOTO: Google MapsGas Works Road in Lowestoft. PHOTO: Google Maps

A total of 10 fire crews were alerted to the incident on Gas Works Road in Lowestoft at 1.29am.

No one was injured in the leak, with crews standing down at 3.01am.

General manager Craig Hamilton said: "In the early hours of this morning we noticed a smell of ammonia which we use in the freezing of our products.

"We immediately isolated the area and contacted the emergency services.

"Because of the nature of ammonia being noxious, the emergency services responded with their hazardous materials procedures kicking in.

"They were on the site with us within 15 minutes and stayed for nearly two hours before handing it back to us.

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"It was very much taking precautions. No one was hurt and there was nothing in terms of danger for local residents.

"We are now back to normal operations."

Beccles and Holbrook both sent two crews to the scene, along with crews from Woodbridge and Saxmundham.

Four further crews were alerted, including two from Lowestoft South and two from Haverhill.

A spokesperson for Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service said: "Fire crews were called to a hazardous materials leak and monitored the scene while engineers isolated the leak.

"The site was evacuated and the road was closed as a precaution.

"There were no casualties in the incident."

Suffolk Police and the East of England Ambulance Service were alerted as a precaution, with the Environment Agency also informed.

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