Chemical fire company ‘broke rules’ on fire and environmental safety

The chemical packaging company which went up in flames a week ago, sending toxic black smoke into the atmosphere, had been warned for breaking fire and environmental rules several times, according to television show EenVandaag.

Documents seen by the show’s researchers state Chemie-Pack was warned in 2002 that it would face sanctions for breaking fire regulations and between 2007 and 2009 it was criticised for not storing chemicals properly.
Yet despite repeated warnings, the company failed to take action and was three times threatened with a fine. In 2006, it was ordered to pay €13,000 because its fire extinguishing system was not in order, Nos tv reports.
On Tuesday, Breda’s mayor Peter van der Velden said Chemie-Pack may have infringed the terms of its licence but declined to give further details.
A spokesman for the company told the television programme it had always met the conditions of its permits.
The Telegraaf reports on Thursday that people living close to the plant are becoming increasingly frustrated at the lack of information. One school supervisor told the paper that at first children were allowed to play outside. ‘Then on Tuesday we were phoned and told to keep them in,’ she said.
The public health body RIVM is to take new samples of soil in which very high levels of lead were found earlier this week.

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