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Major accident hazards emergencies

A wide range of chemical leakages, fires and incidents involving radioactive materials may require action by the emergency services, the Council and other agencies. These incidents may result in a hazard to public health and/or pollution to the environment.

The source of a chemical or environmental hazard may be:

  • A fixed industrial site (e.g. a large chemical works or a nuclear power station)
    A vehicle or container in transit
    An abandoned material on public or private land

You may find the ‘Hazardous Materials Advice’ information (below) useful in terms what you can do to protect yourself and your family in the rare occurrence of an incident involving hazardous substances.

Hazardous Materials Advice

If you live near to an industrial hazard, you may be sent an information card about the site and what to do if there is an emergency there.

Make sure you thoroughly understand what the warning is and what you have to do if you get it.

For many incidents involving hazardous substances the best advice initially is:

Go In, Stay In, Tune in

Go In:

  • Go inside your house, preferably upstairs
  • Close all outside doors and windows
  • Switch off ventilation systems
  • Turn-off gas appliances
  • Block any incoming draughts and close dampers on solid fuel heaters

Stay In:

  • Stay in your home and await further instructions
  • Be prepared to offer shelter to passers by
  • Do not go searching for friends or relatives
  • Extinguish all flames, for example pilot lights
  • DO NOT go outside until advised by the Police. With radiation everything will look normal and you will not see, smell or feel anything different

Tune In:

  • Tune into your local BBC radio station (92.4 and 103.9 FM) or TV for further information. The BBC has plans to provide public information in an emergency and you may wish to keep a note of local radio frequencies
  • In addition it would be sensible to ensure you have a battery powered radio and spare batteries in case of interruptions to the power supply
  • Do not use the phone. Keep lines for emergency use only.

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