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Four taken to hospital following gas leak in Rochford
1:54pm Sunday 17th March 2013 in News
FOUR people were taken to hospital after breathing in toxic fumes from a faulty boiler at a home in Rochford.
Firefighters were called to a bungalow in Ironwell Lane at around 10:25 this morning after fears there was a gas leak at the home.
Family members were evacuated from the property with some suffering headaches and dizziness after breathing in foul smelling fumes thought to be emanating from a log burner.
It is not yet known what type of gas was leaking from the boiler but firefighters were confident it was not a carbon monoxide leak as the poisonous gas is colourless, odourless and tasteless.
Paramedics are thought to have taken two women and two men to Southend Hospital who were suffering side effects from the leak.
Sub-officer Angus Neale from Southend Fire Station, said: “It was quite a pungent smell. It was clearly coming from the boiler area and whether that was down to fuel spilling and venting off we are not sure yet.
“When we arrived residents had managed to get members of the family out but one elderly woman was suffering the effects in particular.
“It is also tough for us to determine when a property is safe to return to in these cases, because while we ventilate the area with high pressure fans, the fumes could return.”
Mr Neale stressed the dangers of using log burners as they are not regulated in the way normal household boilers are.
Divisional Officer Neil Fenwick will be raising the issue in the House of Commons.
Mr Fenwick said: "Incidents like this serve as a reminder to people to make sure that their appliances are maintained and checked regularly. The outcome in this case could have been far worse.”