RIDDOR Report for Harrow Leisure Centre "Ammonia" Incident

Health and Safety Executive did not have the information requested.

Dear HSE,

On 26 February 2009 there was an incident at Harrow Leisure Centre, which appears to have involved either ammonia gas or fumes from an ammonia solution. I believe that RIDDOR reporting should apply to this incident and that HSE should have received a report from the centre’s operator, Leisure Connection Limited.

I request a copy of the RIDDOR report.

If HSE has not received such a report, I would like to know what action, if any, HSE is taking because of the failure to report. This part of my request is not made under FOI.

Background to the Request

A Harrow Council press release issued the next day stated: “Harrow Leisure centre was evacuated last night at around 9pm after members of staff detected a strong smell. The centre reopened at around 2.30pm today (Friday 27 Feb), once the problem was identified. Around 27 members of the public were in the centre at the time but none were taken ill and all made their way home. One member of Leisure Connections Staff went to Northwick Park Hospital after complaining of feeling ill but they were allowed home after a check up.”

A Council email (author Stepehn Tribbick 27.2.09) about the incident states:
“Two staff went to Northwick Park Hospital and another couple were giving (sic) medical assistance on scene. No public were unwell. The Fire Brigade attended and found high levels of ammonia (not chlorine) inside the centre and spent the next 5 hours ventilating the building to disperse the fumes.”

Another email, (author Jasvinder Kaur Perihar, date uncertain) states that the two who attended hospital had “breathing difficulties”.

According to the HSE website, http://www.hse.gov.uk/riddor/guidance.htm , RIDDOR applies on two counts.

1) If something happens which does not result in a reportable injury, but which clearly could have done, then it may be a dangerous occurrence which must be reported immediately

2) accidental release of any substance which may damage health.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Burns

Infoline Admin,


Dear Mr Burns

Thank you for your enquiry regarding your FOI request.

Your request has been forwarded for reply to:

Grace Alade

Freedom of Information Officer

Health and Safety Executive

Rose Court

2 Southwark Bridge



Telephone: 020 7556 2100 (Switchboard)

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Health and Safety Executive

Dear Mr Burns

Freedom of Information Request Reference No:2009060406

Thank you for your request for information about:

The Ammonia incident at the Harrow Leisure Centre on 26 February 2009

This is to let you know that HSE does not enforce the Harrow Leisure
Centre. It is enforced by the Local Authority- London Borough of Harrow.
Their contact details are as follows-

London Borough of Harrow

Civic Centre

P Box 57

Station Road

Harrow Middx


Phone -0208 863 5611

If you have any queries about this letter, please contact me. Please
remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely

Ramani Abeyakoon

Freedom of Information Officer

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Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

Dear Ramani Abeyakoon, Thank you for your reply of 23 June 2009.

My understanding is that RIDDOR reports are held by HSE. If this is not the case, please advise to whom I should make my request.

If HSE does hold RIDDOR reports, then my FOI request needs to be dealt with by HSE.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Burns

Health and Safety Executive

Mr Burns

If there was a RIDDOR report for this incident it would be held by the L
B of Harrow as they are the enforcing authority.

Ramani Abeyakoon
Freedom of Information Officer
Rose Court
2 Southwark Bridge
0207 556 2182

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