June 17, 2014
The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) is reporting that the truck transporting alumina hydrate has been removed from the Salt River at approximately 3:20 p.m. today. On removal it was found that the chemical contents escaped and settled at the bottom of the river.
NEPA is collecting water samples to determine the impact of the chemical spill on the water quality in the river.
In the meantime, the Agency is in receipt of West Indies Alumina Company's (Windalco) proposal on the procedures the company intends to follow to remove and or neutralize the chemical from the river. Windalco is now in the process of cleaning-up the oil spilled from the truck's engine.
NEPA is expressing disappointment with Windalco's tardiness in removing the truck from the river.
In the meantime, The Agency is urging persons to stay away from the area until clean-up efforts are completed.
Alumina Hydrate is a chemical product of the processing of Alumina from Bauxite. The ecological information of the chemical is that it does not present any hazard to the environment but if inhaled in high concentration can result into mild irritation and in terms of skin contact, it may cause irritation.