Chemical spillage alert

FORTY firefighters attended a chemical spillage scare in Hawick last Friday morning.
FORTY firefighters attended a chemical spillage scare in Hawick last Friday morning.
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FORTY firefighters attended a chemical spillage scare in Hawick last Friday morning.

Silver Street was closed off as eight crews rushed to the scene after complaints of noxious smells and feelings of dizziness among staff working in nearby shops and offices.

After searching the premises with protective clothing, it was discovered that the basement under Scotbet had been flooded with water. It is believed tins of old white spirit and paint thinner in the basement had leaked and mixed with the water, causing a reaction.

Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service’s chemical unit from Edinburgh attended, but after various tests concluded that the fumes were not life-threatening. However, a man was treated at the scene after inhaling fumes.

Officers from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) also turned up, but said there was no threat of the substance reaching the nearby River Slitrig.