The Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation on Thursday asked people staying near the chemical plant where a gas leak took place in the wee hours to stay indoors and use a wet cloth to cover their nose and mouth.
At least eight people, including an 8-year-old child, have been killed and over 100 hospitalised due to the gas leak which took place at LG Polymers chemical plant in Gopalapatnam.
"There is (a) gas leakage identified at LG Polymers in Gopalapatnam. Requesting citizens around these locations not to come out of houses for the sake of safety precautions," the GVMC said in a tweet.
"Please use wet cloth as a mask to cover your nose and mouth," it added.
The GVMC said its officials are trying to reduce the impact of the gas leak by spraying water and public address systems are being used to ask people to use masks.
Ambulances, fire engines and policemen have reached the spot, officials said.
Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy has asked district officials to take every possible step to save lives and bring the situation under control.
South Korean company LG Polymers makes polystyrene and expandable polystyrene, a versatile plastic used to make a wide variety of consumer products like toys and appliances. It has been in operation since 1961.