Friday, September 22, 2017

34,500 people told to shelter in place due to aluminium fire

The outside of storage of aluminium scrap, shavings, etc. is done on a daily basis with no issues. On occasion a fire ignites. Here is a recent story that quickly turned into a national story.

A fire outside an industrial building southern Madrid, Spain, has unleashed a toxic cloud over neighbouring areas on Saturday, September 2, 2017 in the morning. A pile containing 40 tons of magnesium and aluminum shavings caught fire in the incident.

The Spanish emergency services have advised nearby residents of Griñón, Humanes and Moraleja de Enmedio to stay at home. More than 34.500 people are said to live in the areas affected.

A hotel and a second industrial building have been evacuated. A 47-year-old worker was taken to a nearby hospital and treated for second-degree burns. Windy conditions have helped to spread out the fumes throughout the day, making them weaker and less dangerous to the population.

We pray that the injured worker recovers fully from his injuries. The combination of aluminium and magnesium shavings is a hazard to begin with. Let alone outside storage in a city environment increases the hazard that if anything should occur it will only worse. We acknowledge that for many it is a luxury to have inside storage of our scrap or metal waste. Regardless, the hazard of a fire of aluminum and magnesium shavings cannot be underestimated and all precautions should be taking into consideration.

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