Yesterday morning a mountain stream flowing through Pak Shek Wo village was covered with white foam, which would not wash away. A nearby detergent factory manager explained that they had changed the connection of a pump to the pipe in the factory, but there was problem and it leaked. The Environmental Protection Department (EDP) is following up the incident.
The manager explained that one of the pumps in the factory was damaged earlier in the morning and they had to replace it. Unfortunately the pipe connecting the pump was not connected properly and around 4 to 5 barrels of detergent flowed into stream. He stressed that the detergent was harmless, and could easily be flushed away. He saw no need for anyone to be worried.
However, some of the local villagers are worried – about the pollution of the river. The villagers told the media that over the past 10 years there have been at least a dozen times when such leaks had occurred. Although they did not drink the river water, they were concerned about impact on the environment.
Some of the foam was blown to nearby houses and onto plants, and concerned about the presence of harmful chemicals, some villagers called the police. The Police and Fire Department arrived at the scene to investigate, and sprayed some anti-detergent chemicals on the area.
The detergent factory has around 20 years of history. It dilutes concentrated detergents and bleach into liquids that can be use to clean buildings or restaurants. The stream runs through Pak Shek Wo village, Pak Shek Terrace and then flows to Tseung Kwan O Village.
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