Major Ammonia Leak in Ukraine; Residents Told to Take Shelter at Basements After Russian Airstrike

Ammonia is leaking from a chemical plant in Ukraine after a Russian airstrike on Monday damaged the facility and people in the city have been advised to take shelter as the toxic gas is fatal.

The leak started on Monday morning around 8: 30 and the affected area is estimated to be around 2.5 km from the site, including the villages of Novoselytsya and Verkhnya Syrovatka. Shelling by Russian forces had damaged the tank with Ammonia at the facility which caused the leak.

Ukraine Ammonia leak
Ukraine Ammonia leak Twitter/@MFA_Ukraine

Governor Asks People to Take Shelter

People within the affected area are recommended to take immediate shelter underground, said Sumy Governor Dmytro Zhyvytsky, adding that people need to go to their bathrooms and turn on their showers at a fine spray, and breathe through a damp bandage (preferably moistened with 5% acetic or citric acid solution) if ammonia is detected.

He has advised people to take shelters at basements and asked them to prefer the lower floor as Ammonia is lighter than air, according to Kyiv Independent.

Emergency services were at the scene but the residents of the Sumy, nearly 200 miles from Kyiv, face no threats with the leak.

'Ukraine Aimed to Mass Poison Residents'

The facility, Sumykhimprom's chemical plant, produces a wide range of chemical fertilizers. It came after Russia had made claims that Ukraine was aiming to mass poison residents of the Sumy region if Russia controls the city, therefore it was mining ammonia and chlorine at Sumykhimprom facilities.

Earlier claims were made that Moscow had helped Syria in using chemical weapons at the various site against its residents in the civil war. However, Moscow has denied using chemical weapons.

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was also poisoned with a Soviet-era nerve agent during a flight nearly two years back. But Moscow had denied allegations.