Environmental Protection Ministry officials inspect 22 factories near Gaza to ensure safety of hazardous material.

Environmental Protection Ministry officials inspected 22 factories within 40 km. of Gaza on Thursday, to ensure that all hazardous materials were in safe, protected locations.

Throughout the day, teams of inspectors went from factory to factory looking at the storage conditions of the materials — such as those used in mass-production processes and cooling systems — and making sure that there was no leakage, in case rockets were to hit the sites. Not only was the team checking factories based on their distance to population centers, but also based on who had a greater amount of materials that could cause a potential hazard, a ministry official told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday.

In two factories where the storage on site was not sufficiently protected, the companies shipped their materials to other locations of their own firms. At other sites that lacked proper storage facilities, the companies were able to ship their materials to special facilities that the Environmental Protection Ministry had dedicated in advance for the storage of dangerous materials, the official said.

Every factory that had any issue was fixing the situation immediately, and the problems were easily reparable within an hour, according to the official. During the examinations, the ministry teams also made sure that all of the factories had their proper toxins permits.

Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan joined one of the inspections, at the Tibon Veal factory in Kiryat Malachi.

“The ministry staff deployed reinforcement teams, checking the factories in the South, and is working in order to prevent risk to the population in the case of damage to one of the plants containing hazardous materials,” Erdan said.