Monchy-Humieres. Truck carrying titanium dioxide catches fire on highway

Monchy-Humieres. Truck carrying titanium dioxide catches fire on highway

Illustration photo – Credit: Sdis 60 / Aurélien Dheilly

It is 6 p.m. this Friday, July 8 when the firefighters of Ressons-sur-Matz are called for a fire. It was a truck that caught fire on the A1 motorway, near Monchy-Humieres, towards Paris.

The departmental fire and rescue service (SDIS) reports that two lances were needed to control the disaster.

20 tons of titanium dioxide

In its report this Saturday, the SDIS specifies that the truck was carrying 20 tonnes of titanium dioxide. On its website, the National Institute of Research and Safety for the Prevention of Workplace Accidents and Occupational Diseases (INRS) says that this product, which is found in its natural state, cannot ignite.

However, for many scholars,titanium dioxide dust may cause mechanical irritation to eyes and respiratory tract“. Moreover, according to the national health security agency (Anses), a public body this time, titanium dioxide is carcinogenic when inhaled at a certain level of concentration. At least in animals. For the human being, this subject is still debated.

The risk of pollution averted

Fortunately, no one would have been exposed to inhalation during the Monchy-Humières fire. As confirmed by the SDIS: “The firefighters are protected and the intervention is far from homes. We have not identified any risk of pollution”.


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