Company director arrested in Hungary’s toxic sludge case

Toxic frog… a small survivor struggles with the sludge.

The man at the head of the company responsible for Hungary’s worst environmental disaster has been arrested on suspicion of public endangerment and environmental damage.

The arrest came as Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orban, blamed human negligence for the spill.

Thousands of litres of orange-coloured toxic sludge burst from a breech in the reservoir wall of a storage unit at the Hungarian Aluminium Production and Trade Company last week. Eight people were killed and more than 120 were injured as a result of the burst, while environmental groups say it could take years to clean up.

As waste continues to seep across villages in the west of the country, scientists fear the entire reservoir wall could collapse. Prime Minister Orban has called for the aluminium company to have its assets frozen and for it to come under state control to minimise future mismanagement.

Related: Video: Reservoir leak releases toxic sludge in Hungary


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