Fire crews removed the chemical spillage and transported it to a waste-treatment plant, according to a press release from the Civil Protection authorities in the area. Igualada also deactivated its municipal emergency plan, after 60,000 residents were told to stay in their homes on Thursday due to the cloud, which could have caused respiratory irritation.
Speaking to Catalunya Ràdio, the Igualada mayor, Marc Castells, said that the incident “looked to have been caused by human error.” The council in the area has opened an investigation to determine the causes of the explosion, which left three people with light injuries.
Five people had to be treated in the streets of Igualada by medical teams on Thursday – three firefighters and two members of the public. Six people were taken to hospital, and were kept under observation until 8pm before being discharged.
A total of 21 ground crews and one helicopter crew from the regional fire service were deployed to tackle the incident, as well as 17 crews from the regional Mossos police force, six ambulance units and staff from the Red Cross.
The chemical cloud over Igualada on Thursday.