A gas leakage on Wednesday afternoon at Bhilai Steel Plant's blast furnace number 5 triggered panic among dozens of employees who developed breathing problems, an official said. Three people fainted after inhaling the gas.
"A large contingent of staff who were at work at blast furnace no-5 had all of sudden developed breathing problems and three of them collapsed, it was a panic all around," a senior company official said.
The company management immediately swung into action and announced to have sorted out the problem.
Later the plant which is a flagship unit of the public sector giant, Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL), issued a press statement and admitted "there was a minor gas leakage at blast furnace-5..."
"Leakage of gas is a normal possibility after the start of the furnace. In view of this all safety precautions are taken and affected people are provided with immediate medical treatment," the statement added.
"Three people were affected by the gas leakage and were rushed to a hospital, where their condition was stated to be normal. The situation in blast furnace-5 too is normal and production as per the plan is taking place."