West Shore RCMP officer

Ammonia leak halts City Centre Park

All roads and pathways leading to City Centre Park were blocked off until shortly before 11:30 a.m.

An ammonia leak kept emergency crews busy Wednesday morning and into the afternoon.

The leak occurred from a cylinder in the newly opened Westhills Arena at City Centre Park. It was discovered around 8 a.m.

“Ammonia is common for cooling arenas,” said Scott Davidson, assistant fire chief, Langford Fire Rescue.

Witnesses saw a large cloud of ammonia hovering over City Centre Park shortly after the leak was detected.

“The cloud was emitting from the left-hand side of the building,” Davidson said.

Businesses in the area were evacuated as well as some residents on Jenkins Avenue.

“We are asking that people stay away from the area,” said West Shore RCMP Cpl. Kathy Rochlitz while manning a road block on Langford Parkway.

West Shore RCMP, several fire departments, Capital Regional District Hazmat team and BC Ambulance were on scene.

All roads and pathways leading to City Centre Park were blocked off until shortly before 11:30 a.m.

The arena and other facilities were deemed safe and reopened around 2 p.m.

“Basically it’s self-mitigating. The hazmat team needed to make an entrance to stop the leak first,” Davidson said adding that after the leak was stopped they worked on increasing the ventilation of the building.

A comfort centre was set up by Langford Emergency Support Services at the Langford Legion. Nearly 40 evacuated people took refuge at the centre.

“We were set up 45 minutes from the call out and staffed by seven people,” Tom Burchill, director of Langford ESS.

The cause of the leak is still unknown. When the leak was discovered refrigeration contractors were on site, but it is not clear if they were working on the cylinder or not, Davidson said.

No injuries have been reported, but anyone showing any signs of ammonia exposure is asked to seek medical assistance, said Rochlitz.

“Ammonia can cause serious health problems,” said Rochlitz explaining symptoms of exposure include burning eyes and difficulty breathing.

 

reporter@goldstreamgazette.com

 

 

Just Posted

HarbourCats bats hot in home return

Victoria squad downs Yakima Valley Pippins 17-2

Victoria veteran receives French Legion of Honour, becoming knight of France

Ted Vaughan was a pilot in the 408 “Goose” Squadron in WW2

Witness the passion and fire of flamenco in Victoria this July

Seventh annual Victoria Flamenco Festival features free and ticketed performances downtown

Sidney youth bowl over the competition, head for nationals

Youngsters take Mens and Womens Singles Championships at recent tournament

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Most Read