News24: 120 dead fish in Durban harbour

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120 dead fish in Durban harbour
21/09/2007 21:08 - (SA)

Durban - Water quality in Durban's harbour has started to improve following the release of chemicals from a blazing chemical storage depot, a senior water affairs and forestry department (Dwaf) official said on Friday.
Raj Philips said monitoring of the water in the area surrounding the Island View Depot (IVS) had revealed that the colour of the water had started to improve.
He said that the number of dead fish being recovered from the area around the depot had not increased significantly.
On Thursday he said that Dwaf officials had recovered about 120 dead fish from the harbour waters.
Chemicals released for three hours
The chemicals were released into the harbour for three hours on Tuesday night during the blaze.
Surrounding the group of tanks that went up in a blaze is a lined wall around the tanks designed to catch all fluid that leaks from it.
Known as a bund wall, the sealed walls should be able to hold the amount of liquid in the tanks.
Philips said the decision to release the cocktail of chemicals from the bund wall into the harbour had been taken by the joint operational command centre set up to deal with the blaze.
He said that there had been no indication that the chemicals had accumulated or spread to other parts of the harbour.
Philips said that IVS had been informed of Dwaf's requirements to monitor water quality in the harbour.
"They must test the water for every single chemical that was in the tanks," said Philips.
He said monitoring was being stepped up and the company was duty bound to notify anyone caught fishing in the area of the depot of the dangers.
Philips urged anyone in other parts of the harbour who had their suspicions that something was amiss - for example, dead fish or water discoloration - to contact him on 082-808-9906.
At a meeting held for residents of Durban's Island View suburb on Friday, Ehlers said the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research had been tasked with testing water samples.
Raw substances could be 'toxic'
He said that the raw substances could be toxic. "It all revolves around concentrations and how close you are," he said.
Referring to reports that a tanker had possibly been the cause of the fire, he said that there had been a tanker at the Bay 3 facility where the blaze erupted, but that the driver had moved his vehicle to safety and was not the cause of the blaze.
One employee is believed to have died in the blaze, although police and IVS management are saying that the 22-year-old is unaccounted for.
According to Superintendent Vincent Mdunge three employees were working on one of the tanks at about 19:00 on Tuesday when the blaze started.
He said that three of the two men managed to escape to safety.
 
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Yeah been on the local radio all day. Hectic stuff.
 

leslie hempel

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hectic....
 
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Man made disasters eish its sad wat a loss to the environment
 
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Human kind will lead themselves to extinction
 

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