Prosecution investigates 4 deaths from toxic gas leak

The public prosecutor of Qalyubiya Governorate has ordered autopsies on four people who died as a result of inhaling toxic gases in Akrasha village, Qalyubiya, said judicial sources on Monday.

According to the Health Ministry, four people died and others became sick after they inhaled toxic gases that emanated from waste water.

The state-owned Middle East News Agency (MENA) reported that the prosecution set up a committee of experts to examine soil samples for toxic gas in the area where people died.

The prosecution summoned a number of eye witnesses and residents in the area to question them about the incident and how the waste was dumped in the area. It also requested the results of investigations into the incident.

Khanka City Mayor Hisham al-Kashef told reporters that the Akrasha area contains over 1,000 factories, including lead foundries and that they illegally dump their waste water in the area. Kashef added that while one of the residents was dumping waste from a truck, thick smoke emanated from the ground, killing the driver of the truck, Amr Darwish. Three others were also killed while attempting to save Darwish, including his wife.

A number of other residents also fell ill after inhaling the gas.

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