Asbestos found at ex-chocolate site

14 May 2013

Asbestos has been found in a fire at a disused chocolate factory in Derbyshire.

Council officials confirmed that the residue was left after a blaze and series of explosions at the former Thorntons site in Belper last Friday (May 10). They are thought to have been started by burning aerosol cans.

Asbestos fibres can be harmful in large quantities.

Amber Valley Borough Council said, however, that there was no high level exposure in the vicinity.

A council statement said the material has been tested and confirmed as containing Chrysotile (white asbestos).

It said that asbestos fibres are contained within cement compound and are only released when the panels are broken up.

The statement continued: "Respirable fibres - fibres that can be breathed in - are therefore thought to be a small fraction of total material released."

People in the Derwent Street area said they could not see where they were going during the fire due to the thick black smoke.

A 19-year-old man was arrested and has been freed on bail.

Copyright Press Association 2013

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