UPDATE: Chichester gas smell is from Channel ship

THE strong smell of gas in and around Chichester today is being attributed to a ship venting its storage tanks.

At around 3.40pm West Sussex County Council said the odour was coming from a ship in the Channel.

A statement from West Sussex Fire and Service posted on Facebook just before 4pm said: “The smell has emanated from a tanker in the English Channel that has vented the storage tanks on board causing a gas smell to move north east inland from just off Selsey Bill.

“Just to reassure anyone who is concerned both Sussex Police and the Coastguard Agency have confirmed that the smell should dissipate naturally.”

A spokeswoman for the Environment Agency said: “We have been in contact with a number of our partners following reports of a gas smell.

“We have confirmed with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency that this is the result of an oil tanker venting its tanks as it proceeds up the Channel and the direction of the prevailing wind.”

Have you been affected by the smell? Have you been evacuated?

You can get in touch by calling 01243 534166 or emailing sheena.campbell@chiobserver.co.uk.