COLOMBO: At least five people were killed in Sri Lanka on Thursday after a worker at a rubber factory fell into a tank of ammonia and co-workers and residents tried to save him, police said.
The worker who fell into the ammonia tank died, along with four of those who tried to save him in the accident in the town of Horana, 50 km from the capital, Colombo.
Police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekara said 10 people were treated in hospital for exposure to ammonia, which is used in the production of rubber. He declined to identify the factory where the accident happened.
An official at the state-run hospital in Horana confirmed the death toll.
“Workers from a next-door garment factory were also affected by the gas and they are being brought to hospital,” said the hospital official, who declined to be identified.
“They are still being brought in.”
Television showed rescue officers wearing breathing apparatus, taking injured out of the factory and searching the ammonia tank for any other casualties.—Reuters