At least five tonnes of liquid waste containing sodium cyanide, equivalent to 125,000 lethal doses of cyanide spewed out of a tank after it was hit by a snowplough at a plating factory in Hanamaki, northern Japan, on Tuesday, Feb 26. One liter of the toxic liquid waste, used to remove nickel plating from surfaces, is enough to kill 25 people, the official said. The leak occurred when workers were trying to remove piles of snow from the site, which has seen severe winter weather over the last week, and damaged a valve on the tank in which the chemical was stored. An official said snow absorbed most of the liquid and clean-up workers have been able to collect the contaminated snow. He adds, "The leak has not reached a nearby river and we have not received any reports of impact on people."