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Environmental Damage to Nearby Crops by Hydrogen Fluoride Accident

불화수소 누출사고 사례를 통한 주변 농작물의 환경피해

  • Kim, Jae-Young (National Institute of Chemical Safety, Ministry of Environment) ;
  • Lee, Eunbyul (National Institute of Chemical Safety, Ministry of Environment) ;
  • Lee, Myeong Ji (National Institute of Chemical Safety, Ministry of Environment)
  • Received : 2019.02.19
  • Accepted : 2019.03.15
  • Published : 2019.03.31

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Hydrogen fluoride is one of the 97 accident preparedness substances regulated by the Ministry of Environment (Republic of Korea) and chemical accidents should be managed centrally due to continual occurrence. Especially, hydrogen fluoride has a characteristic of rapid diffusion and very toxic when leaking into the environment. Therefore, it is important to predict the impact range quickly and to evaluate the residual contamination immediately to minimize the human and environmental damages. METHODS AND RESULTS: In order to estimate the accident impact range, the off-site consequence analysis (OCA) was performed to the worst and alternative scenarios. Also, in order to evaluate the residual contamination of hydrogen fluoride in crop, the samples in accident site were collected from 15-divided regions (East direction from accident sites based on the main wind direction), and the concentration was measured by fluoride ($F^-$) ion-selective electrode potentiometer (ISE). As a result of the OCA, the affected distance by the worst scenario was estimated to be >10 km from the accident site and the range by the alternative scenario was estimated to be about 1.9 km. The residual contamination of hydrogen fluoride was highest in the samples near the site of the accident (E-1, 276.82 mg/kg) and tended to decrease as it moved eastward. Meanwhile, the concentrations from SE and NE (4.96~28.98 mg/kg) tended to be lower than the samples near the accident site. As a result, the concentration of hydrogen fluoride was reduced to a low concentration within 2 km from the accident site (<5 mg/kg), and the actual damage range was estimated to be around 2.2 km. Therefore, it is suggested that the results are similar to those of alternative accident scenarios calculated by OCA (about 1.9 km). CONCLUSION: It is difficult to estimate the chemical accident-affecting range/region by the OCA evaluation, because it is not possible to input all physicochemical parameters. However simultaneous measurement of the residual contamination in the environment will be very helpful in determining the diffusion range of actual chemical accident.

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