Seveso, Italy (1976)
The Chemical Disaster at Seveso, Italy in 1976 was a human-made disaster that has had a devasting effect physically, socially and economically on Italy. This disaster started about 12:37 on July 10th 1976, when a runaway reaction occurred at a chemical plant manufacturing 2, 4, 5-trichlorophenol sodium salt by alkaline hydrolysis of tetra chlorobenzene in the suburbs of Milan in the northern part of Italy (Chemical Accidents (Seveso I, II and III) - Prevention, Preparedness and Response 2014) Due to human error, the main impacts of this disaster were, the many deaths caused by the dioxin, deaths of livestock and the contamination of soil and air.
The physical impacts caused by the Chemical Disaster at Seveso where in fact quite extreme. These poisonous dioxins released a cloud of chemicals that waffled an estimated 50 metres into the sky, Dr Paolo MacGrelli had said that "during this roughly 3,000kg of chemicals were released into the air and among them 2,4,5 trichlorophenol, used in the manufacture of herbicides and anywhere from 100g to 20kg of dioxin"( Corliss, M 1999).
Furthermore as a result of the poisonous dioxins being released, in addition there was also over one thousand-eight hundred hectares of land that was contaminated, which was later tested by scientists (Explosion of Chemical Plant In Seveso, Italy 2014), the contamination of the air and soil has led to many deaths of animals and diseases. Therefore procedures should have been commenced quicker and the main contaminated areas of Italy should have been evacuated.
Seveso Chemical Leakage has had a significant social impact on the Italian community through their physical, psychological and emotional wellbeing. It has been proven that "dioxins are highly toxic and can cause reproductive and development problems, damage the immune system, interfere with hormones and also cause...