Gas leak at Malaysian airport Kuala Lumpur affects 39 people

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – Around 39 people fell ill at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia on Thursday after a gas leak occurred in an aircraft workshop. However, no passengers were affected and no flights were disrupted, the fire service said.

The Selangor state fire service said it received an emergency call at 11.23am (03:23 GMT) about a chemical leak at the Sepang Aircraft Engineering facility in the Southern Support Zone and dispatched its personnel and a hazardous materials team.

The technical system is separate from the passenger terminal and those affected by the gas worked for three companies operating there, the fire department said in a statement.

Thirty-nine people complained of dizziness and nausea, 14 were taken to the air disaster unit for treatment, while one was hospitalized, the agency said.

There is no major threat to public safety, it said.

The chemical was later determined to be methyl mercaptan, added to liquefied petroleum gas as an odorant, and came from an unused tank at the plant, the agency said.

The leak will be patched and the tank dismantled and disposed of, it was said.

(Reporting by Danial Azhar and Rozanna Latiff; Editing by Ed Davies and Michael Perry)

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