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Mysterious strong odor of a harsh chemical substance wafts through Tel Aviv region

Many Residents of Greater Tel Aviv area and other parts of central Israel complain of a harsh chlorine-like substance that could be felt in the air. Following the outpour of complaints the Environmental Protection Ministry launched a series of urgent tests and later announced that the odor poses no danger to the public, but stressed that it continues efforts to find what triggered the smell,which Many people described as similar to the smell of chlorine. Initially, the Home Front Command believed the source of the smell could be gas drilling near Nitzanim in southern Israel. However, the claims were proven wrong. No special instructions were given to the residents, as the Ministry of the Environment stated that no dangerous substances were detected.

Residents who attempted to call the Tel Aviv Municipality to complain received an automated message according to which professionals were checking the issue of an “unknown smell,” and that there is “no need to report it, as media outlets will update throughout the day.”
The ministry said that tests conducted in the Tel Aviv region show negligible traces of harmful substances in the air. The stench was primarily reported in central Israel's Dan and Sharon districts.

Chemical attack?

A resident of Bnei Zion described the odor as "the smell of poison, a chemical smell, similar to that of pesticide."

"Are we under a chemical attack? The smell lingers in the air. I am throwing up and having trouble breathing," she added.

Ran Biton, an environmental consultant working in southern Tel Aviv, said the smell resembled the odor of bromine or chlorine.

"This is an unusual incident," he said. "A high concentration of this substance could be dangerous."

The two residents called the municipality but were told that the origin of the stench was unknown.

Published: 05.03.12,7340,L-4224395,00.html

Photos: Tel Aviv under heavy haze and dust storm , The last two shows the Environmental Protection Ministry workers checking the problem today.

Added: May-3-2012 Occurred On: May-3-2012
By: aydeo
Other Middle East
Tags: Mysterious odor, chemical substance, Tel Aviv region
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