Unidentified gas kills trees, causes eyesores in central Vietnam

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A mysterious gas emitted from an old gas cylinder in Quang Ngai Province Thursday night has allegedly killed local trees and caused eyesores in the central province.

A Tuoi Tre report said the person who let the gas out of the cylinder, 28-year-old Bui Thong, said he brought the cylinder out into a nearby field after he opened the valve at home and it released a horrible smell.

Thong said he had bought the 800-liter cylinder for VND15 million (US$720) from a metal scrap dealer with the intention using the material to make a tire pump.

The cylinder's origins have yet to be made clear.

Doan Tan Sy, a local police officer, said he had sent a team to check the field on Thursday night after receiving reports that a horrid smell had spread over a more than 100-meter radius.

It stinks like animal dung, Sy said.

"Out first conclusion is that the gas is a toxin dangerous to people's health," said Major Doan Duong, deputy head of the Nghia Hanh district police.

Since the dumping of the open cylinder, many people in the provinces Long Ba Nam village have been panicked as many trees along local streets have died and nearby sugar cane fields have withered to death.

Many people living near the Go Ot field, where the cylinder was placed, are now suffering from eyesores and a slight burning sensation on their faces.

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