February 13, 2018 8:12 pm

Process upset at wastewater facility the cause of strange smell in south London: ministry

FILE - Concerned residents called London Fire on Tuesday about a strange odour.

Coun. Anna Hopkins / Twitter
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If you were in the city’s south end on Tuesday and smelled an unusual odour, don’t be alarmed.

Concerned about the strange smell, residents called Union Gas and the London Fire Department on Tuesday.

READ MORE: London fire officials, Union Gas rule out natural gas leak in investigation of weird odour


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The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change have confirmed the odour was a result of a process upset within the wastewater treatment facility at a company located in the south end of the city.

The odour was initially detected on Friday, but it wasn’t until Tuesday that the ministry was able to confirm the cause.

The process upset has caused odours to leave the site. The smell can be described as a biological odour, similar to cabbage or sulphur that is easily confused with the smell of natural gas, said a media release from the City of London.

It went on to say that at this time, the ministry does not believe the odour is harmful to the environment or the community.

READ MORE: ‘Strange smell’ evacuates two Western University residences

The ministry has been at the facility and continues to work with the company to address the smell.

Although the odour reported was not a natural gas leak and does not pose a threat, the City is reminding residents that a natural gas leak can be very dangerous, adding that if you suspect there is a natural gas leak, to call Union Gas or 911 from a safe distance.

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