Caltex Australia said today a hydrogen fluoride leak that occurred shortly after 8.00 am this morning had been contained at the company's Lytton refinery in Brisbane.
The unit was immediately shut down with the release contained by a water deluge system. Employees and contractors in the area of the affected unit were immediately evacuated. All people on the site have been accounted for. There was no impact on surrounding residents.
The refinery is now in a safe condition.
A total of 43 people including Caltex employees and contractors have potentially been affected. Twenty three people have been transported to hospital with the others receiving treatment on-site.
Families and employers of the affected people are being notified.
"All of us at Caltex deeply regret that people have been injured at our site," said Lytton refinery manager Andrew Brewer.
"Our focus today is on caring for the people affected and their families. We will initiate a full investigation when the initial response is complete.
"We are very appreciative of the rapid response by the emergency services to assist with the management of the incident. The incident has not affected production at the refinery."