ALKALI AND SULPHURIC ACID WORKS are regulated by the Alkali, &c., Works Regulation Act, 1906. These works are divided into two classes—(a) Alkali works and (b) Sulphuric Acid and other specified works. Class (b) comprises the following :—(1) and (2), Sulphuric acid works, being those in which the manufacture of sulphuric acid is carried on, and works for the concentration or distillation of sulphuric acid, but not being alkali w orks ; (3) chemical manure works ; ( t) gas liquor works; (5) nitric acid works; (6) sulphate of ammonia. works and muriate of ammonia works; (7) chlorine works ; (8) muriatic acid works; tin-plate flux works; and salt works in which the extraction of salt from brine is carried on, and in which muriatic acid gas is evolved ; (9) sulphide works; (10) alkali waste works ; (11) venetian red works ; (12) lead deposit w orks ; (13) arsenic works ; (14) nitrate and chloride of iron works ; (15) bisulphide of carbon works; (16) sulpho-cyanide works ; (17) picric acid works ; (18) paraffin-oil works; (19) bisulphite works ; (20) tar works ; (21) zinc works. Alkali w orks are those wherein are manuc•ctured sulphate of soda, or sulphate of potash, in which muriatic gas is evolved, or where copper ores are heated by common salt or other chlorides, whereby a sulphate is formed, and in which muriatic gas is evolved.
These works must be carried on so as to secure the condensation of acid gases, as specified in the Act, to the satisfaction of a Local Government Board inspector after his personal examination. The penalty for contra vention herein is £50 for the first, and £100 for each subsequent offence. Subject to a penalty of 110 for the first, and £50 for every subsequent offence, with a further £5 for every day of continuance, the best practicable means must be used for preventing the discharge of noxious and offensive gases. subject to a penalty as first above-mentioned, with a further penalty of £5 per day of continuance, the acid drainage and alkali waste must be kept out of contact so as not to cause a nuisance. The sanitary authority of the district, at the request and expense of the owner of the works, must provide means for draining and carrying off the acid into the sea or a river or watercourse. Compensation must be paid in respect of any damage done by reason of such drainage. Alkali waste must not be de posited or discharged without the best practicable means being used for effectually preventing any nuisance arising therefrom. To cause or know
ingly permit such a nuisance is to incur penalties of from £20 to 150. If, after receiving notice from a chief inspector to abate such a nuisance, the owner of the works fails to do so, he incurs a penalty of £20, and £5 per day for so long as if shall continue after the time limited by the notice.
Registration of Works.—No works in either of the above classes may be carried on unless previously registered and certified so to be. Application for first registration and a certificate must be made in January or February in every year, and the certificate will be issued and in force until the follow ing 1st day of April, and thenceforth annually from that date. The duty on the certificate is £5; and in the case of a sulphuric acid works the duty is £3. Notice of change of ownership of works must be given NV ithin one month of such change. Fur non-registration a fine not exceeding £50 is incurred. For the purpose of the above duties, stamped forms of certificates are issued at the Inland Revenue offices.
Inspection.---A chief inspector and other inspectors of alkali, &c., works are appointed by the Local Government Board. An inspector may not be (a) a laud agent; (b) employed or interested in any work to which this Act applies; or (c) in any patent connected therewith, or with the condensa tion of acid gases, the treatment of alk li waste, the prevention of discharge or offensiveness of noxious gas; or (d) employed in any other chemical work for gain. The owners of works must give facilities to inspectors to exercise their powers, which are as follows :—(a) At all reasonable times, by day or night, but so as not to interrupt the process of manufacture, enter and inspect any works to which the Act applies; (b) examine processes and appa ratus; (c) ascertain the quantity of gas discharged into the atmosphere, condensed, or otherwise dealt with; (d) enter places for the treatment and deposit of alkali waste, or where liquid containing acid is likely to come into contact with such N%aste (e) apply any tests and make any experiments they may think proper. Inspectors must supply detailed reports to the chief inspector, who will make an annual report to the Local Government Board.