Mistakes, equipment issues pose serious threats with rail-related hazmat
While images of crude oil infernos caused by freight train derailments haunt many living near rail lines, a more statistically likely and troubling reality looms.

Hundreds of rail-related hazardous materials releases occur regularly in the suburbs, spilling chemicals into the environment that range from acids to ammonia.

Here's a look at a sampling of mishaps leading to pollution and/or public concern:

• A rubber lining fails and acid burns a hole in a tank car at the EJ&E Railroad (now CN) yard in Joliet releasing 800 gallons -- July 2001.

• A loose bolt on a tank car allows vapor to escape from a CN train in Buffalo Grove. The chemical smell is noxious and firefighters evacuate a nearby factory -- June 2005.

• Loose plugs on a tank car release a highly explosive liquid, hexene, at the EJ&E's yard in Joliet -- March 2006.

• Flammable liquid sloshes out of a loose manhole atop an EJ&E tank car and onto a public street in North Chicago -- October 2008.

• Another loose bolt from a tank car on a CN train in Buffalo Grove allows chemical fumes to permeate the air once more -- February 2011.

• A vapor cloud emerges after 857 gallons of hydrofluoric acid spill in Union Pacific Railway's Dupo yard downstate after workers brace a load with wooden 2-by-4s, not the requisite 2-by-6s -- March 2012.
The causes? Deficient maintenance, old equipment and sloppiness, the data shows.

The Daily Herald surveyed 15½ years of railway hazmat reports across Illinois. Out of 876 statewide occurrences -- averaging at least one a week -- about one-third were caused by a loose closure or device on the train car or other equipment, federal records show.
us_IL  transportation  discovery  environmental  other_chemical 
8 hours ago
Portland Fire and Rescue responds to hazmat emergency at USPS
PORTLAND, Ore. --Portland Fire & Rescue responded to a HazMat emergency last night.
Just before 11 p.m. at the main transfer station for the United States Postal Service in Portland located at 715 NW Hoyt St had a chemical leak.
Upon arrival fire crews found a unknown chemical that leaked out of a package that had gone through the mail. Fire crews called for a HazMat response.
USPS employees and fire crews found that the package had come from the airport and backtracked it to the facility. Airport fire crews responded to a nother site where the package had been transferred and a spill was found there. 
After investigating, Hazmat crews found that the leaking substance was concentrated drain cleaner. The chemical was neutralized and contained at both locations by 12:41 a.m.
us_OR  public  release  response  cleaners 
8 hours ago
Update: Seacrest Avenue reopened following chlorine leak
A chlorine leak caused the 2400 block of Seacrest Avenue to be closed and limited movement at the Plumosa School of the Arts on Friday afternoon, according to Delray Beach Fire Rescue. Aqua Crest Pool was evacuated for part of the afternoon. The leak was secured around 2 p.m.

According to Delray Beach Fire Rescue, a pool supply truck was making a delivery of chemicals to the pool complex when it was noted that a 15 gallon barrel of chlorine was bulging, indicating a chemical reaction.

Crews were able to access the truck with chemical protective gear and place the compromised container within a larger drum for removal.
us_FL  transportation  release  response  chlorine  pool_chemicals 
Oil rig fire in Oklahoma kills two workers, critically burns two others
An oil rig fire in rural Coal County, Oklahoma killed two workers and injured three others, two critically, early Friday morning. The state medical examiner’s office identified the men killed as Tulsa resident Kelsey Bellah, 27, and Ada resident Gary Keenen, 26.
The oil rig is located about 2 miles west of Coalgate, a town roughly 100 miles southeast of Oklahoma City. The critically injured workers were taken to a hospital burn unit in Oklahoma City via airlift, while the third suffered from minor burns on his hands.
The oil rig is owned by Texas-based Pablo Energy. All five men were employees of Lamont-based drilling contractor Dan D. Drilling, which conducts business in Oklahoma, Kansas and the Texas Panhandle. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the State Fire Marshal have begun a joint investigation into the cause of the fire. An OSHA spokesman told the press, “We’re just trying to put the puzzle pieces on the table and (are) looking at them.” Neither Pablo Energy nor the contractor Dan D. Drilling would answer calls from reporters.
us_OK  industrial  fire  death  other_chemical 
Motion claims conflict of interest in Charleston chemical spill
Nearly a year after the Charleston chemical spill, a hearing will take place trying to remove U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin's office from prosecuting criminal charges.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnson has scheduled the hearing for January 5, 2015.

The lawyers for the former president of Freedom Industries, Gary Southern, filed a motion claiming Goodwin's office has a conflict of interest -- because its employees and their families were victims of the spill that left 300,000 residents without tap water for days.

Southern, three other ex-Freedom executives, the company itself and two other employees are facing pollution charges.

Southern also faces fraud charges related to the company's bankruptcy case.
us_WV  industrial  follow-up  environmental  other_chemical  illegal 
Day after chemical spill, rly cops plan to find out if manufacturer had valid licence
THANE: A day after five railway commuters were injured after a bottle of chemical solution cracked and its contents spilled on the train floor, the railway police is planning to ascertain whether the manufactures had a valid licence and if the contents used were permissible. Meanwhile, the condition of the victims is said to be stable and four of them have been discharged from the Thane Civil hospital, on Saturday.

The railway police visited the restaurant, in Mulund, from where one of the commuters, Manohar Shetty, had reportedly got the chemical. The restaurant had got the chemical from an Andheri-based firm, which was closed when the cops went there.

''We want to find out whether the firm had a valid licence to sell the chemical. We are also verifying the contents. We visited the firm on Saturday. However, it was shut. Our officials will visit the firm again on Monday,'' said an investigation official. While four persons have been discharged, one person is still under observation. ''We had discharged one of the injured persons, Sayaji Phanse, on Friday itself. The others, too, have been discharged. Only one person is still under observation but his condition is said to be stable,'' said civil surgeon Dr. Raghunath Rathod.

Railway activists have now started questioning the safety of commuters. ''There must be a mechanism to detect what commuters are carrying with them. The impact of Friday's incident could have been much greater. The police must conduct random checks at the station so that incidents like this are avoided,'' said railway activist Nandkumar Deshmukh.
India  public  release  injury  unknown_chemical 
Villains who poisoned W. Va. drinking water could end up behind bars
Remember back in January when a chemical spill poisoned drinking water for 300,000 West Virginians? Well, this week, six owners, managers, and employees of the (ir)responsible company, Freedom Industries, were indicted by a federal grand jury.

The prosecutor, U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin, said that the company executives’ “flagrant disregard for the law” resulted in the “completely preventable” toxic leak. As 2014 wraps up, the (something resembling) justice system inches a small step closer to punishing the perpetrators of the contamination crime that kicked off the year in environmental disasters.

Before we explore the legal proceedings, let’s take a moment for a refresher on the illegal proceedings that begot this court case. On Jan. 9, Freedom was neglectfully operating its facility of 14 poorly maintained tanks holding 4 million gallons of nasty chemicals on the banks of the Elk River, about a mile upstream of Kanawha County’s municipal water intake, just like any other day. Throughout that morning, residents of Charleston, W. Va., reported whiffs of a sweet, licorice-like fragrance in the air. When the state’s Department of Environmental Protection arrived to investigate, having simply followed their noses to the site of the spill, inspectors observed a 400-square-foot pool of 4-methylcyclohexane methanol, a toxic substance used to “clean” coal of impurities before it’s burned, around a ruptured tank, which appeared to have been leaking for some time. The chemical, MCHM for short, was seeping past a shoddy containment dike, straight toward the river.
us_WV  industrial  follow-up  environmental  illegal 
New reports outline Texas chemical plant confusion, chaos during leak, 4 workers die
LA PORTE, Texas — Danny Francis was working with four others in a control room at DuPont's La Porte plant at 3:30 a.m. Nov. 15 when he "heard a female voice on the radio that sounded 'frantic.'?"

Crystle Wise, a seasoned operator who had joined DuPont only eight months before, was trapped on the fourth floor of a hulking pesticide processing unit about 50 yards away. She reported that she had been exposed to a chemical and was experiencing a reaction.

The Houston Chronicle (http://bit.ly/1wu9FQY ) reports that inside the control room, no alarms indicated a leak and no images on computer screens pinpointed her location as Francis donned a helmet, goggles and gloves.

He headed to the Lannate building — part of what DuPont calls its Insecticide Business Unit — only a few minutes behind co-worker Robert Tisnado, according to accounts in newly released reports from the Harris County fire marshal and Sheriff's Office.

Francis reached the fourth floor by climbing sets of metal stairs inside the foul-smelling pesticide unit, but couldn't find Wise or Tisnado.
us_TX  industrial  follow-up  death  pesticides 
EPA announces first federal regulations for coal ash waste
Six years after a catastrophic coal ash spill in Tennessee washed away homes and polluted rivers, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday the first federal regulations for the toxic wastes created by coal burned to produce electricity.

The regulations disappointed environmental groups because coal ash is not treated like hazardous waste, as they had demanded. Instead the regulations tend to favor electric utilities. The rules do not cover all coal ash ponds at closed power plants or require that existing unlined coal ash impoundments be moved to lined, dry storage away from waterways.

But for the first time, the EPA will regulate the storage and disposal of the estimated 140 million tons of coal produced by utilities every year. Currently, states regulate coal ash impoundments with standards that vary widely.
public  discovery  environmental  other_chemical  waste 
Toxic fumes cause evacuation at Intercos Global Cosmetics in Congers
CONGERS - A report of toxic fumes caused a hazmat scare at a Rockland County business Friday morning.
Rockland County’s hazmat team arrived at Intercos Global Cosmetics in Congers after overheated sorbic acid caused toxic fumes.
Owners of the building called for a voluntary evacuation after at least two people reported feeling ill just before 11 a.m. Several people were taken to the hospital as a precaution.
us_NY  industrial  release  injury  other_chemical 
2 days ago
L'Ariosto owner fined after manager was served corrosive chemical
THE firm behind the famous Di Maggio's restaurant chain has been fined £30,000 after a manager was served a deadly chemical with his lunch.

Michael Prior, 40, ordered sparkling water with his food at the upmarket restaurant L'Ariosto on May 17, 2008, but was accidentally given beer line cleaner, a highly corrosive chemical which had been carried in water bottles from another restaurant.

It caused him serious internal burns and he had to be rushed to hospital where he ended up in intensive care and was ventilated for five days. He later had to have his oesophagus removed.

Windows Catering Company, which also owns Di Maggios and Amarone, pled guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to breaching health and safety legislation between April 30 and May 17, 2008.

The firm admitted failing to assess risks relating to beer line cleaner, failing to ensure safe use and storage of it and failing to provide a safe system of work at the restaurant on Mitchell Street, Glasgow.
United_Kingdom  public  follow-up  injury  cleaners  corrosives 
2 days ago
Chemical dump forces Songhees First Nation evacuations
Residents of 12 Victoria-area homes spent last night at an emergency reception centre after a chemical spill forced them to leave.

View Royal Fire chief Paul Hurst says more than two dozen firefighters and hazardous-material technicians were called out to the home on the 1500 block of Middle Road yesterday. Police say the home was located in a trailer park on land leased out by the Songhees First Nation land near View Royal.

Hurst says neighbours reported seeing a man emptying what is believed to be four barrels of sodium hydroxide onto a lawn around 6 p.m. PT, but police say testing is still being done to confirm the substance.

Sodium hydroxide is widely used in the oil and pulp industries and is present in many cleaning products, but it's also used in making illegal drugs such as methamphetamine.

Emergency crews were able to contain the spill and they believe that the chemical didn't get into any water streams.
Canada  public  release  response  sodium_hydroxide 
2 days ago
TIMELINE: Velsicol Chemical leaves large toxic footprint in the "Middle of the Mitten"
The story of Velsicol Chemical in St. Louis, Michigan is quite complicated. 

And it grows more so as plans continue to develop for finding and cleaning up the contamination left behind in this small town.

We've been working to bring you up to speed on the history of Velsicol Chemical in St. Louis, Michigan all this week. It's one of the most polluted places in Michigan. The company was sloppy, and mistakes were made when it first tried to contain its pollution on its old plant site.

Since then, the community has been working hard to push the government to give the city and the people in St. Louis a thorough cleanup. They hope that future generations won't have to deal with this toxic legacy.
us_MI  public  discovery  environmental  unknown_chemical 
2 days ago
Fire at Redlands battery manufacturing facility causes $25,000 worth of damage
REDLANDS >> A fire at an industrial battery manufacturing facility on Brockton Avenue caused businesses in the vicinity to be evacuated Tuesday evening.

The Redlands Fire Department responded to the incident at 840 W. Brockton Ave. at around 5:30 p.m. after receiving a report of a fire in the formation area of the Teledyne Battery Products facility, authorities said in a news release. Upon arrival, firefighters discovered light smoke coming from the building, they added.

Because of the smoke and a chemical smell, businesses such as The Home Depot, Jack in the Box, 7-Eleven and Toyota of Redlands were evacuated until crews got a handle on things.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, said city spokesman Carl Baker.
us_CA  industrial  fire  response  batteries 
3 days ago
Zotos VP: Nov. spill was cleaned up quickly
GENEVA — Doug Parkinson, the new Vice President of Operations at Zotos International, said the company reacted properly to a Nov. 19 chemical spill at the Forge Avenue manufacturing plant.
There was a spill of an estimated 720 gallons of ammonium hydroxide the night of Nov. 19. State Department of Environmental Conservation Region 8 officials said the spill happened after workers replaced a pump that transferred the ammonium hydroxide from a storage tank to a processing tank.
Where's the story?
4 Points Mentioned
Ammonia hydroxide is a solution of ammonia in water. It’s typically used as a cleaning agent.
Upon learning of the discharge of the chemical into the stormwater collection system on the property, Parkinson said Zotos immediately contained the discharge at the exit to the drainage system and blocked off the drainage way to prevent any further contamination.
us_NY  industrial  follow-up  response  ammonium_hydroxide 
3 days ago
HAZMAT, Lake County Narcotics investigating unknown chemicals in Willoughby
HAZMAT teams and Lake County Narcotics as well as Willoughby police and fire departments were investigating unknown chemicals at a building at 28323 Apollo Parkway in Willoughby on Dec. 17.

Willoughby Fire Chief Al Zwegat said they were called in by law enforcement officers for help investigating the scene at about 9 p.m. 

“Right now there’s no concern of any exposure for occupants in any of the other buildings and there’s no need for evacuation at this time,” he said. 

Zwegat said there were teams inside sampling unknown chemicals with a device that can identify over 60,000 different chemicals. 

A green decontamination tent was set up at the scene for “worst-case scenario,” he said. 

“Some of it we’re not exactly sure what we’re dealing with,” he said. “It’s decontamination so if they do come in contact with some unknown chemical that requires decontamination we’re all ready to deal with it.” 

The fire chief said there were no employees in the building. He said there was one man in the building, who is fine.” 
us_OH  public  discovery  response  unknown_chemical 
3 days ago
Students find chemical leak in apartment – U N I V E R S E
Four BYU students living at 9 and 9 apartments, located at 876 E. and 900 N., reported that an alarm was continually ringing on their apartment’s carbon monoxide detector.

The roommates believe a carbon monoxide leak in their apartment could’ve been deadly. Alex Martin, a BYU student from Houston, is one of the affected roommates.

Martin has lived at 9 & 9 Apartments since the last week of August. Martin said that Nelson Brothers Management was very neglectful in dealing with a life threatening problem.

Inside the apartment’s water heater closet, carbon monoxide levels of 2000 parts per million were found. The water heater malfunctioned and gas was then exposed.
us_UT  public  release  response  carbon_monoxide 
3 days ago
'Multiple human errors' led to deadly Taiwan gas blasts
Prosecutors said deadly gas explosions in Taiwan were caused by "multiple human errors" Thursday as they charged 12 people over the blasts, including the head of a chemical company and government officials.

The disaster killed 32 people and wounded more than 300 in southern Kaohsiung city in July as explosions in underground pipelines sparked massive fires and left trenches running down the middle of some streets, with vehicles thrown onto the roofs of buildings.

In the first indictments since the blasts, prosecutors charged the chairman of LCY Chemical Corp., which operated the pipeline, and 11 others with causing death and injuries by professional negligence and offences against public safety.

"Multiple human errors led to the grave tragedies of 32 people losing their lives and 321 people being injured," prosecutors said in a statement.
Taiwan  transportation  follow-up  death  natural_gas 
3 days ago
Bible Hill Fire, RCMP and HAZMAT respond to chemical spill at Dal AC
BIBLE HILL – When police arrived on scene at Dalhousie Agricultural College just after noon on Thursday, a routine response quickly escalated when a bystander used the word “explosion.”

At 1:30 p.m., RCMP and Bible Hill Fire Department responded to an automated alarm inside the Cox Institute of Agricultural Technology. Upon arrival, a person who was inside the building said they heard a small explosion.

The decision was quickly made to call in a hazardous materials team to air on the safe side of caution as fumes began to circulate through the building. In the end, the crews determined a container of creosote had broken open in an empty room, causing a loud crash but no explosion.

“The initial word was that there was a small explosion on the second floor,” said Bible Hill fire Chief Dwane Mellish. “We wanted to take our time and get everyone involved to stay on the safe side of things.”

Around 2 p.m., a small group of firefighters entered the building and surveyed the scene, ensuring all rooms were empty. An hour later, the HAZMAT crew went in and began clean up.

Creosote, a wood-preserving chemical, is not explosive or corrosive. Around 4:30 p.m., once a safe air quality was ensured, the building was re-opened.

Despite not being as threatening a situation as it seemed early on, the firefighters and police took every step to ensure safety.
Canada  laboratory  explosion  injury  corrosives 
3 days ago
UPDATE: Auburndale Firefighters Respond to Ammonia Leak at Commercial Carrier :Daily Ridge
Two of the three employees exposed to the leak  were transported to the hospital. There were 100 lbs of ammonia released in the building. Progress Road is shut down as hazmat crews work to contain the leak, according to Auburndale Fire Chief Stuart McCutcheon.
Original Release

AUBURNDALE- Auburndale firefighters are on the scene of an ammonia leak at Commercial Carrier, 420 Progress Road. Firefighters responded at 10:17 a.m. An ammonia line burst in the plant. The building was evacuated. Three employees exposed to the leak were rescued at the scene. There are no further injuries. Progress Road is closed as firefighters continue  to contain leak. Polk County Fire Rescue and the county’s Hazmat team are assisting. There is no other information to report at this time.
us_FL  industrial  release  injury  ammonia 
3 days ago
One Million Dollar Price Tag to Clean up Santa Paula Explosion Site
VENTURA, Calif. -
The cost to put out a chemical fire and clean up the Mission Rock Road waste disposal site is estimated to be $1 million so far.

A chemical reaction inside a vacuum truck triggered an explosion at the facility on November 18 hurting dozens of people and forcing many residents in Santa Paula to evacuate.

County leaders updated the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday on the progress of the clean up and efforts to make the waste water treatment facility safer.

"We have made a great deal of progress," said Chris Stephens, Director of the County's Resource Management Agency. "The site has been neutralized and cleaned up with the exception of the 'lake' in the center of the facility where the initial explosion occurred. That area is expected to be neutralized, solidified and removed in the next three weeks" said Stephens.

Officials told the Supervisors that hundreds of tests show the area is safe from hazardous materials and that produce grown in the area is safe from any contamination.

The Mission Rock Road waste disposal plant will not reopen until three conditions are met. The site must be completely cleaned and deemed safe. The company must demonstrate that it can operate safely and the city of Oxnard must agree to accept products from the facility.

The $1 million loss does not include two fire engines damaged in the blast.
us_CA  transportation  follow-up  environmental  water_treatment 
4 days ago
Seven workers injured in fire at Nandesari plant
VADODARA: Seven workers were injured after a fire broke out at a manufacturing facility in Nandesari GIDC near here on Tuesday. Fire brigade officials said the fire engulfed one of the plants of Nandesari-based PAB Organics Private Limited after an explosion in a chemical reactor. The fire broke out in the plant number two of the private limited firm, which manufactures fine chemicals and pharmaceuticals intermediates.

The vital statistics of other five workers are normal," said a doctor from the emergency department of Shreeji Hospital. "It took us around two and half hours to extinguish the fire. There was a barrel of highly flammable solvent and a tank of methanol 40 feet away from the spot where the explosion took place.
India  industrial  explosion  injury  methanol  pharmaceutical 
4 days ago
PendaForm cited by OSHA in August chemical spill
A local thermoforming manufacturing company has been ordered to pay $25,000 in fines after receiving seven citations that it mishandled a chemical spill in August.
PendaForm Corp. received citations for seven serious violations, according to a “Citation and notification of penalty” document issued Nov. 6 by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
PendaForm entered into an informal settlement agreement with OSHA in the spill that occurred Aug. 25, said Chad Greenwood, assistant area director of OSHA’s Madison office.

According to the citations, PendaForm failed to have employees use proper equipment to handle the chemical spill, train its employees in the proper procedure to clean it up, or have an emergency response plan to deal with hazardous spills.

OSHA initially ordered PendaForm to pay $49,000 in fines, or $7,000 for each of the seven violations. After PendaForm officials met with OSHA in November, the fine was reduced to $25,000, according to Scott Allen, regional directgor of public affairs for the U.S. Department of Labor.
us_WI  industrial  follow-up  response  unknown_chemical 
4 days ago
Lab fire in Sonning Common was not a chemical incident
A small fire in a Sonning Common lab was contained to one room by firefighters yesterday.

Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service sent a full chemical incident unit to Johnson Matthey Technology Centre in Blounts Court at 4.06pm.

However, when fire crews arrived they found the small blaze was confined to machinery in a laboratory clean room.

Spokesman for the fire service Dominic Llewellyn-Jones said: "The fire was contained to the one room and did not spread to any other part of the building."

Caversham Road Fire Statio had also joined the Oxfordshire firefighters in tackling the small blaze and all the crews left the scene by 5.30pm.
United_Kingdom  laboratory  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
4 days ago
4 indicted in West Virginia chemical spill case
CHARLESTON, W.Va. –  Four former chemical company executives have been indicted on pollution charges over a January spill that triggered a ban on drinking water for days for 300,000 West Virginia residents.

The indictment unsealed Wednesday charged ex-Freedom Industries presidents Gary Southern and Dennis P. Farrell and two others with failing to ensure that the company operated the steel storage tank that leaked the coal-cleaning chemical in a reasonable and environmentally sound manner.

Southern also faces federal fraud charges related to the company's bankruptcy case. Freedom filed for bankruptcy eight days after the Jan. 9 spill of the chemicals into the Elk River in Charleston. West Virginia American Water uses the river for its water supply a mile and a half downstream.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement that the tank conditions at Freedom Industries "were not only grievously unacceptable, but unlawful. They put an entire population needlessly at risk.  As these actions make clear, such conduct cannot, and will not, be tolerated."
us_WV  industrial  follow-up  environmental  cleaners  illegal 
4 days ago
Worker hospitalized after anhydrous ammonia leak in Charleston
CHARLESTON, Ore. - One person was hospitalized after an anhydrous ammonia leak at Bandon Pacific on Tuesday.

State police said a 300-pound tank holding the ammonia was compromised shorlty after 3 p.m. when a maintenance worker was draining the oil from the bottom of a freezer that was shut down.

"He could not get the valve shut off fast enough and it overtook him and he decided to leave the area," said Charleston Fire Chief Mike Sneddon.

About 50 people were evacuated from the area.

"Coos Bay Hazmat went in, closed the valve, and then they capped the bottom of it just to make sure," said Heddon.
us_OR  industrial  release  injury  ammonia 
4 days ago
CSB: DuPont Safety Lapses, Mechanical Failures Cited In Fatal Texas Accident
Mechanical problems and ineffective safety practices were likely factors in the chemical leak that killed four workers last month at DuPont’s complex in La Porte, Texas, federal authorities say.
The U. S. Chemical Safety & Hazard Investigation Board (CSB), an independent agency charged with investigating chemical accidents, points to problems with the vent system in the building where the release of 23,000 lb of toxic methyl mercaptan originated on Nov. 15.
In addition, DuPont “did not effectively implement good safety practices” that require workers to wear air respirators and other protective equipment, CSB alleges.
On the basis of its own review, DuPont says it believes that CSB’s description of the circumstances “leading to the release of methyl mercaptan from the vent header system is the most likely scenario.” But the company adds that it “does not necessarily agree with other aspects of CSB’s statement.”
CSB disclosed preliminary findings from its ongoing inquiry in testimony submitted to two Senate committees on Dec. 11. The panels are examining the Obama Administration’s efforts to improve safety at chemical facilities.
According to CSB, the leak occurred after an unplanned shutdown of the methomyl production unit because of water dilution in a chemical storage tank. Methomyl is the active ingredient in DuPont’s Lannate brand insecticide.
us_TX  industrial  follow-up  death  thiols 
5 days ago
Small fire at Johnson Matthey tech centre in Sonning Common
Fire crews still at Johnson Matthey Technology Centre following a small blaze in a laboratory

Fire fighters are still at the scene of a small fire at a laboratory in Sonning Common.

A crew from Caversham Road fire station joined Oxfordshire fire fighters to tackle the small blaze at Johnson Matthey Technology Centre in Blounts Court at 4.10pm today.

Watch manager James Dowd said the cause of the fire was "still being investigated".
United_Kingdom  laboratory  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
5 days ago
Chemical spill reported at Y-12; personnel evacuated
OAK RIDGE — Y-12 officials Tuesday declared the situation “stable” several hours after a chemical spill forced an evacuation of a production facility at the nuclear weapons plant.

The plant’s fire department responded to alarms at the Purification Facility, where the leak of acetonitrile — a flammable and toxic solvent — occurred around 10:30 a.m. According to plant officials, no workers were injured during the “operational emergency,” there was no release to the environment, and the chemical was confined to the “affected area.”

At an afternoon press briefing, Andy Huff, a manager in the Y-12 contractor’s infrastructure organization, and Steven Wyatt, a spokesman for the National Nuclear Security Administration, said firefighters had entered the Purification Facility for a second time and determined that the leaking chemical had “dissipated” and no longer posed a threat.
us_TN  industrial  release  response  acetonitrile  flammables 
5 days ago
Explosion in school lab injures five, one critical
Five municipal school students were burnt, one of them critically, in an explosion of chemicals at a civic school in Ghatkopar. Mayor Snehal Ambekar has asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to hold a detailed probe into the incident.
The incident took place at around 7 pm on Monday at Ramabai Ambedkar Nagar Municipal School at Ghatkopar. Some students, under the Eklavya Abhyaskia project, were studying in school laboratory, when the electricity went off. One of the students tried to light a lamp, due to which chemicals in the laboratory suddenly exploded, causing burn injuries to five of them.
One of the victims, Prathamesh, has received 60 per cent burn injuries and is in a critical condition at KEM Hospital, while others have suffered upto 30 per cent burn injuries. Four of the injured have been admitted to the BMC-run KEM Hospital, while one has been undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Ghatkopar.
Raising the issue in the BMC House, local Congress corporator Pravin Chheda demanded that the BMC should hold an inquiry into the incident
“Under the Eklavya Abhyasika project, classrooms are supposed to be given to students to study. But, at that school, students were asked to study in a laboratory. Also, there was no person available to monitor them,” said Mr Chheda.
India  laboratory  explosion  injury  unknown_chemical 
5 days ago
‘Honey oil’ lab explosion burns Porterville man
A Porterville man has been injured in a “honey oil” explosion and is in critical but stable condition, Porterville police said Tuesday.

Honey oil is a form of cannabis obtained by soaking marijuana in a chemical solvent.

About 8 p.m. Friday, a fire broke out at a home in the 1700 block of North Beverly Street, where firefighters and officers found a harvested marijuana garden and a honey oil extraction laboratory.

Police went to Sierra View Medical Center, where Arturo Rodriguez, 23, had been taken by a friend for treatment of severe burns.

He was injured when the lab caught fire and severely damaged the home, police said. He was later flown to Community Regional Medical Center.
us_CA  public  explosion  injury  drugs  solvent 
5 days ago
Overturned tanker truck, chemical spill shuts down Anderson Co.
Hazmat crews are on the scene of a tanker truck wreck in Anderson County. 

The wreck happened just after 3 a.m. on Highway 287 near FM 645 in the Tennessee Colony area. Southland Response Hazmat manager Richard Lenius said the tanker truck turned over, blocking both lanes of the road. A passenger vehicle then struck the side of the tanker causing nearly 1,000 gallons of glycerine to spill onto the road.

 "The spill poses "no human health hazard, but the road is closed and traffic is being diverted until everything is cleared," Lenius said.
us_TX  transportation  release  response  other_chemical 
6 days ago
Fiabila USA and 2 staffing agencies expose workers to explosion and chemical hazards at nail polish manufacturer on Environmental XPRT
MINE HILL, N.J. -- Permanent and temporary workers were exposed to workplace dangers, including chemical hazards and vapors from flammable liquids, at a Fiabila USA Inc. facility in Mine Hill. Following a complaint, an inspection in May 2014 by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration found Fiabila workers and temporary workers employed by two staffing agencies were exposed to hazards and other dangerous safety and health violations at the plant. The inspection resulted in 30 OSHA citations against the nail polish manufacturer and staffing agencies. Proposed penalties total $139,500.

Fiabila faces $109,500 in penalties for 23 serious violations, which exposed plant employees to fire, explosion and safety and health hazards related to flammable chemicals. Inspectors found Fiabila stored thousands of pounds of flammable liquids on-site in indoor storage tanks. One tank overflowed in July 2014 because of a disabled or broken safety mechanism.

JobConnection Services Inc. in Dover provided general labor staff to the nail polish manufacturing plant and faces $18,000 in fines for three serious violations. Joulé Clinical & Scientific Staffing Solutions, a division of System One, provided employees at Fiabila's quality control laboratory. The agency's Parsippany office was cited for two serious citations, carrying a $12,000 penalty. Both staffing agencies were cited for failure to train temporary workers on chemical hazards, emergency action plans and proper respirator use.
us_NJ  industrial  follow-up  response  flammables 
6 days ago
Chemical leak in southern Minnesota town
CLARKS GROVE, Minn – An anhydrous ammonia leak caused the partial evacuation of a Freeborn County town on Monday.

County Emergency Management Director Rich Hall says about 9,000 gallons of anhydrous ammonia leaked around 11 am, forcing the evacuation of approximately 15 homes in the northwest portion of Clarks Grove.

Hall says several area fire departments responded to the emergency, including Clarks Grove, Geneva and Hartland.  He says one firefighter was treated at the scene for inhalation issues suffered while assisting in the evacuation.
us_MN  public  release  injury  ammonia 
6 days ago
No dough for Dunbar: Gov.'s budget does not include funds for 50-year-old NDSU building
Most of North Dakota State University’s capital project requests didn’t make it into the governor’s budget, including funds to replace a 50-year-old chemistry building that has had two fires in the past four years.

Of the $136.7 million in state-funded capital projects that NDSU requested and the system approved, Gov. Jack Dalrymple awarded NDSU just $18 million, for a new veterinary diagnostic lab.

Demolishing and replacing Dunbar Laboratories, a chemistry building completed in 1964, was ranked second-highest in life-safety capital project priorities for the university system.

Gregory Cook, chairman of NDSU’s chemistry and biochemistry department, said the department has been asking for a new building for 20 years.
us_ND  laboratory  discovery  environmental  unknown_chemical 
6 days ago
Junior Ice Hockey Players Felt Dizzy and Nauseated. The Fire Department Found Out Why — and Soon 81 People Were Hospitalized.
LAKE DELTON, Wis. (TheBlaze/AP) — A carbon monoxide leak during a junior hockey game at a Wisconsin ice rink sent dozens of people to hospitals, authorities said.

At least 81 people were treated for symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning after the leak was discovered at Poppy Waterman Ice Rink in Lake Delton on Saturday, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

Players reported having headaches, dizziness and nausea after a game between the Dells Ducks and the Rochester Ice Hawks, according to the Delton Fire Department, which recognized the symptoms.
us_WI  public  release  injury  carbon_monoxide 
6 days ago
Major Companies Say No to Chemical Flame Retardants
The debate over chemical flame retardants seems to be heating up. The Center for Environmental Health, which helped encourage a rewrite of California’s regulations regarding safety standards in furniture manufacturing, announced last week that 16 major furniture manufacturers have now sworn off chemical flame retardants.

The companies, which include Facebook, Staples, Autodesk and Blue Cross Blue Sheild of Massachusetts, have pledged to stop buying furniture with chemical flame retardants in them. Several of the companies, like Staples and HDR Architecture, North America’s second-largest architectural firm, are national brands.

The pledge against chemical flame retardants
The movement is in response to new California standards that allow furniture manufacturers to opt out of adding chemical flame retardants to their products. Technical Bulletin 117-2013 also changed the mechanism for determining a product’s flammability risk, which in effect has encouraged furniture manufactures to expand their use of safer, sustainable and low-toxic materials.

A USDA worker tests the flammability of children’s pajamas containing flame retardant, 1974.
Kaiser Permanente led the movement earlier this year with its pledge to stop buying furniture imbedded with flame retardant chemicals. Its announcement prompted a rebuke from the North America Flame Retardant Alliance (NAFRA) and the American Chemistry Council (ACC). The ACC has expressed its “concern” about the decision, stating that “flame retardants help save lives” and appealing for more discussion on the matter.
us_CA  industrial  follow-up  environmental  other_chemical 
6 days ago
Burning chemical closes 12-mile stretch of I-20 in Scott County
 An 18-wheeler, carrying some type of hazardous material, caught on fire Monday night on I-20, in Scott County. The result is a 12 mile stretch of the roadway being closed to both east and west bound traffic.

East bound traffic is being routed off the interstate at exit 88, the Forest/Raleigh exit, and back on to I-20 at exit 100, the Lake Exit. For west bound traffic, off at exit 100 and back on at exit 88.

The fire, located near mile marker 95, is a Hydrazine Aqueous Solution, and expected to burn through the night. The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality and MEMA will be on the scene to answer questions about the chemical.

Hydrazine is a colourless flammable liquid with an ammonia-like odor. It is highly toxic and dangerously unstable unless handled in solution.
us_MS  transportation  fire  response  hydrazine 
6 days ago
Crews called to Nashua high school for chemical spill
NASHUA, N.H. —Four students and two teachers were being checked out after a chemical spill in a bathroom at Nashua North High School on Monday.

Fire officials said they were called to the school shortly after 11 a.m. They said the spill involved grolleg lump, a silica-based product used in ceramics. It isn't clear how it got into a bathroom, but the incident is not considered suspicious.

"It's a chemical that is used by the students on a daily basis as part of their process," said Deputy Fire Chief Michael O'Brien. "It could be somewhat of an irritant, but it's not extremely hazardous to health."

A fire official said the injuries were minor skin irritations, and everyone is expected to be OK.

The section of the school where the spill took place was sealed off, and the remaining students and faculty were moved to other parts of the building.
us_NH  education  release  injury  irritant 
6 days ago
WA’s Ravensthorpe nickel mine shut after chemical spill
ONE of Australia’s biggest nickel mines has been temporarily shut as its owner, First Quantum Minerals Ltd, investigates the cause of a processing-plant rupture that resulted in a chemical spill.

A “structural failure” occurred yesterday in the atmospheric leach tank at the Ravensthorpe operation in Western Australia, and the subsequent spill was contained in the plant’s bunded, or protected, area, a First Quantum spokesman said.

“All personnel have been accounted for and no injuries have been reported,” he said.

No adverse environmental effects are anticipated, the spokesman said.

“Investigations to determine the cause of the rupture are being undertaken with Government regulators,” he said.
Australia  industrial  release  response  unknown_chemical 
7 days ago
10 Killed After Chemical Tanker Explodes on Delhi-Jaipur Highway
10 people have been killed and 12 others are seriously injured after a chemical tanker exploded on the Delhi-Jaipur highway today. The number of dead could go higher as many of those injured are in hospital in critical condition.

The incident happened near Chandwaji, about 40 kilometres from Jaipur.

Eyewitnesses say some vehicles collided with each other on National Highway 8 due to an accident and then a tanker carrying chemical Butonil, coming from the back, rammed the stalled vehicles and burst into flames.

Due to the explosion, other vehicles on the road also caught fire.
India  transportation  explosion  death  other_chemical 
7 days ago
Chemical fumes may have burned eyes of emergency responders in Palmer Township
Emergency workers responding to a suicide attempt in Palmer Township complained of fumes burning their eyes Sunday, which prompted a hazardous materials response, according to the township fire commissioner.

Fire Commissioner Stephen Gallagher said the emergency workers arrived at 2:09 p.m. after receiving a call of a suicide at 2 Orchid Court. Gallagher said a woman in her 30s drank various household cleaners in order to kill herself.

Emergency workers felt burning in their eyes and called for a hazardous materials response at 2:15 p.m.

Local emergency workers initially entered the home to determine a baseline level of contamination, Gallagher said. A hazmat crew from Lehigh County came to check the toxicity of the air before letting anyone in the home.
us_PA  public  release  injury  cleaners  suicide 
7 days ago
Utah woman settles with chain over chemical-laced iced tea
A Utah woman has reached a settlement with a barbecue chain restaurant where she unknowingly drank iced tea mixed with chemicals and nearly died.

Dickey’s Barbecue and Jan Harding issued a joint statement this week announcing that they had come to terms that will lead to extensive changes to ensure such an incident never happens again. They declined to disclose how much money Harding, 67, received or any other details.

A worker inadvertently mixed lye into an iced-tea dispenser at a Dickey’s in the Salt Lake City suburb of South Jordan. Harding drank tea on Aug. 10 and suffered deep, ulcerated esophagus burns.
us_UT  public  follow-up  injury  sodium_hydroxide 
8 days ago
State fire code faces overhaul, starting January 1.
Fire officials will overhaul the state’s fire code on Jan. 1, when Massachusetts will join nearly 20 other states by replacing its local regulations with the National Fire Protection Association Standard 1 code, which includes stronger chemical safety regulations and allows hold-open clips at self-service gas stations.

“We’re taking a tremendous knowledge base and putting it in the Massachusetts code,” said Marshfield Fire Chief Kevin Robinson, chairman of the Board of Fire Prevention Regulations, which voted to adopt the national code with Massachusetts amendments in August after three years of study.

One change the new code will bring, according to a statement from the office of State Fire Marshal Stephen D. Coan: tougher chemical process safety regulations than those adopted by the state Board of Fire Prevention Regulations in the wake of incidents including a 2006 Danvers chemical plant explosion that left nearly 400 people homeless.

“Here in Massachusetts, we’ve had a number of large and fairly high-profile incidences involving chemical processes,” said Coan in an interview. With the new code, he said, “we open up lines of communication between local fire departments and chemical processing companies . . . And more oversight to the industry.”
us_MA  public  follow-up  environmental 
8 days ago
Lehigh University trashcan fire under investigation
A trashcan fire Thursday afternoon inside a Lehigh University building is under investigation, according to the Bethlehem Fire Department.

The small fire was discovered inside Packard Laboratory on the Asa Packer Campus, South Side Bethlehem, said city fire Assistant Chief Warren Achey.

He said he was unaware of any injuries.

The cause remained under investigation Thursday night, he said.
us_PA  laboratory  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
9 days ago
Chelmsford factory evacuated after fire breaks out in car testing laboratory
A factory was evacuated when a fire broke out in a mechanical spray booth of a laboratory. 

The fire started in the Visteon car factory in Springfield Lyons Approach at around 2.37pm yesterday afternoon.

The first floor of the building was heavily smoke logged and fire crews had to wear breathing apparatus to extinguish the blaze.

Employees had to leave the building and wait in the carpark before it was safe to go back in.

The fire was extinguished by by 3.23pm and then crews used a fan to ventilate the building and clear it of smoke.

Visteon designs and makes futuristic electronics for touch screens and sensors that can even allow vehicles to drive themselves.
United_Kingdom  laboratory  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
9 days ago
Tragedies In Texas: Why Senators Say New Chemical Safety Rules Are Needed
Accidents at facilities that handle dangerous chemicals in Texas were at the center of a hearing in Washington.

Accidents at facilities that handle dangerous chemicals in Texas were at the center of a hearing in Washington. Some senators are pressing for quick action to reduce the risk of deadly chemical leaks and explosions. They wanted to know if there’s been any progress since President Obama issued an executive order to improve chemical safety, an order that followed the fertilizer explosion in the city of West.

Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-California, said she was disappointed that “little progress” had been made.

“And we know there are problems because they keep happening. And people are dying, and people are going to the hospital,” said Boxer.
us_TX  public  follow-up  environmental 
9 days ago
OSHA cites three companies over Mine Hill plant safety issues
The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited a French company with facilities in New Jersey, along with two staffing agencies, over explosion and chemical hazards at a Mine Hill plant.

OSHA said in a news release that it is proposing $139,500 in total penalties for 28 citations against nail polish maker Fiabila USA Inc., which has facilities in Mine Hill and Linden, as well as JobConnection Services Inc. of Dover and Joulé Clinical & Scientific Staffing Solutions, a division of System One, which has an office in Parsippany. Permanent and temporary workers at Fiabila’s Mine Hill site were exposed to fire, explosion and safety and health hazards related to flammable chemicals, OSHA said.

OSHA conducted an inspection in May 2014 after a complaint, it said. Inspectors found flammable liquids stored in indoor tanks; one tank overflowed in July due to a disabled or broken safety mechanism.

Fiabila was cited for exposing the employees to the hazards, while the staffing firms were cited for failure to properly train temporary workers, OSHA said. Fiabila faces $109,500 in penalties for 23 violations, while JobConnection faces $18,000 in fines for three violations and Joulé faces $12,000 in penalties for two violations.
us_NJ  industrial  follow-up  response  flammables  illegal 
9 days ago
Press Release:  Chemical Footprint Project Launch / Press
A group of corporate and NGO leaders today released a new tool for assessing leadership in corporate chemicals management.  The Chemical Footprint Project (CFP) provides the first-ever common metric of its kind for publicly benchmarking corporate chemicals management and profiling leadership companies.

“You can’t manage what you don’t measure,” said Dr. Mark Rossi, Co-Director of the nonprofit Clean Production Action and Chair and Founder of BizNGO, who released the Chemical Footprint Project today with the Lowell Center for Sustainable Production and Pure Strategies.  “The CFP finally establishes a meaningful measurement of overall corporate performance to safer chemicals in products and supply chains.  We look forward to engaging business leaders in tracking and disclosing their Chemical Footprints.”
public  discovery  response 
9 days ago
Salem dog discovers decades-old dumped chemicals
Michael Chapin and Nichole Rose were enjoying a walk at Minto-Brown Island Park Thursday afternoon when Rose's black lab, Odin, led them to a shocking scene.

In and around a pond near an oak savannah, about a quarter-mile north of the dog park, were several 30-gallon Dow Chemical herbicide drums.

"There were just barrels of stuff lying all over the place," Chapin said. "It disgusted me."

Chapin, 31, has been a protester with the Occupy movement and says he is especially concerned about the environment.

On Friday, he called the city of Salem's parks department, which confirmed the scene and arranged for an immediate cleanup.

But the event wasn't that unusual, parks superintendent Keith Keever said.

Keever comfirmed that five barrels were found in the area, all of which appeared empty and ancient. The barrels had likely had been floating around the park for a decade or more.

"Minto was farmed for 30 or 40 years. Likely either when there was a homestead or with farming, those barrels got dumped there," he said. "They've been there all along."

It's not unusual to find farm implements and other relics of the 1,200-acre park's past, especially after flooding, Keever said.
us_OR  public  discovery  response  ag_chems 
9 days ago
COLUMBIA, SC: One person taken to hospital after chemical spill at USC’s Horizon building
COLUMBIA, SC — Columbia Fire hazmat crews and University of South Carolina police are investigating a chemical spill at USC's Horizon building, located at Main at Blossom streets. One person was ‘decontaminated for a solvent spill’ and taken to a local hospital as a precautionary measure, fire department spokesman Brick Lewis said.

The building was evacuated and the 500 block of Main Street closed briefly while crews inspected the property.
us_SC  laboratory  release  injury  solvent 
9 days ago
Erie firefighters douse chemical fire
No one was injured and nothing was evacuated when Erie firefighters were sent to a westside business on a chemical fire this morning.

Crews were called to United Erie, 1432 Chestnut St., at 3:37 a.m. A small release of sodium from a bulk storage trailer ignited but did not spread to any structures, Erie Deputy Fire Chief Mike Fahey said. The fire was doused with dry chemical extinguishers and soda ash on site, Fahey said.
us_PA  transportation  fire  response  sodium 
10 days ago
US 29 Reopens South of Columbia After Chemical Spill
All lanes of US 29 south were closed prior to MD 198 due to off-road activity involving a single vehicle, according to the Coordinated Highways Action Response Team.

Hydrochloric acid had spilled from a barrel, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue spokesman Pete Piringer, who said Montgomery crews were assisting the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services in responding to what he characterized as a “small spill.”

Travelers were being detoured onto Old Columbia Road, WTOP reported.
us_MD  public  release  response  hydrochloric_acid 
10 days ago
NASA to host info session on rocket explosion impact
NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility will host an information session for the public from 6-8 p.m. Monday, Dec. 15, at the Wallops Visitor Center to provide updates on environmental remediation work completed and underway following the Antares rocket launch failure in late October.

Subject matter experts from Wallops’ environmental team will be on hand to answer questions about the mishap’s environmental impact on Wallops Island, as well as testing and remediation efforts conducted to date and planned for the future. In addition, launch and range safety officials will be available to speak about safety processes and procedures before, during and after launch operations.
us_DE  public  follow-up  environmental  unknown_chemical 
10 days ago
Report: Texas Has Most Hazardous Chemical Plants In Country
FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — A congressional report shows Texas has the largest number of plants in the nation that use the most hazardous chemicals.
U.S. Sen. Edward Markey of Massachusetts released the report Thursday at a hearing on chemical safety and security, adding that facilities nationwide “remain vulnerable” following the deadly 2013 fertilizer plant explosion in the Texas town of West.
The report is based on data submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency by facilities that use large quantities of highly flammable and toxic chemicals.
The report also says Texas has the largest number of plants that are in proximity to more than 1 million people.
us_TX  public  discovery  environmental  flammables  toxics 
10 days ago
Ammonia leak at Tyson's Chick-N-Quick sends 25 to hospital
ROGERS, Ark. —The Rogers fire department responded to an ammonia leak at Tyson's Chick-N-Quick at 400 W Olrich St. Wednesday afternoon.

Several people were hospitalized after an ammonia leak at a Tyson chicken facility. 
Tyson Foods released a statement after several workers were transported by EMS due to the leak. 

A company spokesperson said contractors were performing maintenance on the roof of the facility. A small amount of ammonia smell was pulled into the plant through the air conditioner. 

In all, a total of 25 victims were sent to the hospital, according to officials. 
us_AR  industrial  release  injury  ammonia  hvac_chemicals 
10 days ago
Fire at JEA injures 7, chemical leak causes evacuations
Seven people — five roofers and two JEA staffers — were taken to a hospital after a fire broke out at the JEA sewage pumping station on the Southside earlier this morning.
Jacksonville Fire and Rescue said the workers were putting hot tar on the roof when it ignited a fiberglass pipe at the building on Bradley Road, according to News 4 Jax. The fire caused the evacuation of the building.
All seven were taken to the hospital and are in stable condition. They reportedly were exposed to flames from the burning fiberglass.
The roof fire was put out by firefighters, but a smoldering fire in the lift station's piping was also found.
us_FL  public  fire  injury  unknown_chemical 
11 days ago
OSHA shelves rule on explosive dust
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Four years after an explosion and fire at a Hancock County metals recycling plant killed three workers, the Obama administration has basically shelved a regulatory proposal that could help prevent such incidents.

Tuesday was the anniversary of the Dec. 9, 2010, explosion and fire at the AL Solutions facility in New Cumberland. AL Solutions operated a small plant on the banks of the Ohio River where it processed scrap titanium and zirconium metals into pressed “compacts” that aluminum producers use as alloy additives. Brothers Jeffrey Scott Fish, 39, and James E. Fish, 38, and Steven Swain, 27, were killed in the 2010 incident.

Titanium and zirconium are both highly flammable, and U.S. Chemical Safety Board testing of dusts from both materials found “higher explosion severity,” according to the agency’s report. AL Solutions had a safety manual that listed several requirements for storing and handling the materials, but company management did not enforce those requirements, the CSB said.
us_WV  industrial  follow-up  environmental  dust 
11 days ago
Ammonia Leak Forces Evacuation of Mesquite Pepsi Plant
Authorities said nearly 40 employees were evacuated after an ammonia leak at a Pepsi plant in Mesquite early Wednesday morning.
Mesquite and Dallas hazmat crews responded to the plant in the 4500 block of Interstate 30 at about 2 a.m., authorities said.
Mesquite firefighters said crews isolated the small leak and reopened 90 percent of the plant within about two hours.
Officials said no businesses or neighborhoods were affected by the leak.
us_TX  industrial  release  response  ammonia 
11 days ago
25 People Hospitalized After Ammonia Leak At Tyson Plant
ROGERS (KFSM) -Of the 25 people who were hospitalized with inhalation injuries after an ammonia leak at a Tyson plant in Rogers Wednesday (Dec. 10), 24 have been treated and released as of 9 p.m., according to hospital officials.

The patients were either taken by ambulance or drove themselves to Mercy Hospital in Rogers or Northwest Medical Center in Bentonville, officials said.

The ammonia leak happened around 3:30 p.m. at the Tyson Chick ‘n Quick at 400 W. Olrich St., according to the Rogers Fire Department, which responded to the hazardous material situation.
us_AR  public  release  injury  ammonia 
11 days ago
Flash chemical fire injures two in Fort Worth
FORT WORTH — A man and woman were transported to the burn unit at Parkland Memorial Hospital on Monday afternoon after a flash chemical fire burned their upper bodies, said Lt. Kyle Falkner, a Fort Worth fire spokesman.

Falkner said the two sustained first-degree burns at about 2:30 p.m. at Bodycote Thermal Processing, at 2005 Montgomery St., where they work.

The two workers opened a furnace door and it was hotter than they thought, MedStar spokesman Matt Zavadsky said.

He said the two were taken to Parkland primarily as a precaution.

Firefighters did not need to extinguish any flames, Falkner said.

The two were sent to Parkland because the burns affected their upper bodies, and there is the potential for their airways to become affected, Falkner said.

“Burns involving the airway and face automatically go to Parkland,” he said.
us_TX  industrial  fire  injury  unknown_chemical 
12 days ago
Plant slapped with violations and fines following 2013 explosion
GEISMAR - Eighteen months after a chemical plant exploded it was fined $194,000 by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality for violations spanning six years.

The agency found Williams Olefins violated codes and regulations 29 times. The plant was fined more than all of the plants in the Greater Baton Rouge area.

Williams Olefins has paid in full as the company plans to restart its operations in Ascension Parish.

"They want to get back up and running and they want to get this issue behind them and start fresh," Gregory Langley, with the DEQ, said.

The Williams Olefins explosion off Highway 30 in Geismar killed two workers and injured nearly 100.

"Safety and the protection of our employees, contractors and communities in which Williams does business is, and always has been, the company's number one priority," a plant spokesperson told said in a statement. "Williams cooperated in a full and transparent manner to support the LDEQ review process, including meeting all self-reporting requirements that are a part of LDEQ regulations."
us_LA  industrial  follow-up  death  unknown_chemical 
12 days ago
Chlorine leak leads to evacuations in Smithfield
JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ohio – A chlorine leak led to the evacuation of a couple of homes and the calling in of a Hazmat crew at the Smithfield sewage treatment plant on Tuesday morning.
When a worker got there around 6 a.m., he noticed a chlorine alarm going off. A tank was leaking the gas at the facility on Sherwood Avenue. Hazmat team director Rob Herrington said the quick actions of that worker kept the situation from becoming worse. The worker put the leaking cylinder into the lagoon, so the gas would dissipate into the water.
"Chlorine is a poisonous gas, but it's so far away -- these facilities are isolated -- so it's so far away from any house or anything,” Herrington said. “There wasn't really any immediate danger there, but obviously for the people that work in the area that work at the facility, it has to be taken care of so they can continue to work in that area."
Some neighbors were forced to evacuate as a precaution, but everyone is OK.
us_OH  industrial  release  response  chlorine 
12 days ago
UPDATED: Chemical Leak Prompts Harris Teeter Evacuation
(Updated at 3:55 p.m.) Arlington County’s hazmat team investigated a chemical leak this afternoon following an equipment malfunction at the Harris Teeter grocery store at 600 N. Glebe Road in Ballston.

Firefighters were initially dispatched to the store at 2:34 p.m. for a report of smoke coming from the rear of the building, a chemical odor and some reporting a burning sensation in their eyes.
According to Arlington County Fire Department spokesman Deputy Fire Marshal Brian McGraw, the problem came from a water treatment system that was filtering water for a tank of live lobsters. The system overheated and partially melted. In the process, a chemical — “a type of bromate,” McGraw said — heated and turned into a large vapor cloud.
The system was in a storage room in the back of the store and medics treated a vendor who “breathed in a large amount” of the vapor, McGraw said. The vendor declined an ambulance transport. McGraw said minimal exposure to the chemical is harmless, and customers and employees are now being allowed back into the store.
us_VA  public  release  injury  water_treatment 
12 days ago
Graffiti cleanup triggers hazmat situation at NLV welfare office
Graffiti abatement work outside a state welfare office in North Las Vegas caused employees and visitors to complain of lightheadedness and other symptoms this afternoon, the North Las Vegas Fire Department said.

The department received a report about 12:45 p.m. of employees and visitors feeling nauseous and a strange smell at the Division of Welfare and Supportive Services, located at 3223 W. Craig Road, Suite 140, near Simmons Street, Capt. Cedric Williams said.

The fire department's air quality tests indicated "something of concern," Williams said.

Officials believe fumes from a graffiti removal project done earlier in the day outside of the building were circulating within the office's air conditioning system, Williams said.
us_NV  public  release  response  unknown_chemical 
12 days ago
Lehigh County hazardous materials call at multiple locations over trashed 'unknown chemical'
The Lehigh County Hazardous Materials Response Team was called Tuesday afternoon to assist Salisbury Township officials with an expanding incident involving a trash collector doused with an unknown chemical.

The incident began unfolding about 3:15 p.m. at the Cedar Crest EmergiCenter, 1101 Cedar Crest Blvd. in the township, according to emergency radio broadcasts.

That's where the trash collector apparently sought treatment after tossing a container of the chemical into the trash compactor and it exploded onto him, broadcasts indicate.

He suffered what appeared to be acid burns to his face, arms and lower extremities, broadcasts indicate.

"He is covered with an unknown chemical at this point," a broadcast about 3:30 p.m. indicated.
us_PA  public  release  response  acids  waste 
12 days ago
Two from New Brunswick laboratory taken to hospital
FREDERICTON – Two people were taken to hospital Monday after they inhaled possibly noxious fumes inside a laboratory in Fredericton.

The Fredericton Fire Department says it dispatched its hazardous materials team to the Potato Research Centre on Lincoln Road.

Ambulance New Brunswick says the two people were treated for possible inhalation of a noxious substance or gas.
Canada  laboratory  release  injury  unknown_chemical 
13 days ago
UPDATED: Police, Hazmat Team Investigate Suspicious Substances in Crystal City Apartment
Update at 6:30 p.m.: Investigators have determined that the substances found in the apartment were cleaning supplies and chemicals such as acetone, police spokesman Lt. Kip Malcolm told ARLnow.com. The substances were held in “weird containers,” for reasons unknown. Hazmat teams have cleared the scene.

Earlier: Police and the Arlington County hazmat team are investigating a possible drug lab found in a Crystal City apartment.
Arlington County Police, Virginia State Police and the hazmat team were called to the Crystal Square Apartments (1515 Jefferson Davis Highway) this afternoon after the Arlington County Sheriff’s Office found “suspicious items” and substances in an apartment during an eviction. The items include laboratory equipment like respirators, scales and beakers, according to ACPD spokesman Lt. Kip Malcolm.
us_VA  laboratory  discovery  response  acetone 
13 days ago
Crash reveals suspicious chemicals in car, leads to road closure
ANDERSON COUNTY, S.C. —A crash leads to a hazmat situation that shut down an Upstate road for the better part of the morning.

There was a wreck around 4 a.m. at the corner of Little Mountain Road and Travis road in Anderson County that caused one of the cars catch fire, according to Anderson County Sheriff John Skipper.

People in the other vehicle noticed suspicious items inside that car, Skipper said.

Skipper said investigators confirmed that there were suspicious chemical in the burned care, and two people were taken into custody.

Neighbors told WYFF News 4 they were afraid to go on camera for fear of retaliation, but say they've had problems before with people in the neighborhood who use drugs and thieves stealing items like generators and trailers.

According to the Sheriff's Office, there have been a few drug related problems-but they do not consider it a high crime or drug area. 
us_SC  transportation  fire  response  drugs 
13 days ago
Gas grenade sends elderly woman, authorities to hospital
BISBEE — An elderly resident and responding law enforcement officers were taken to Copper Queen Community Hospital on Saturday night after a gas grenade was tossed from a vehicle into a Bisbee home.
Police Chief Ben Reyna reported that an elderly woman, who remains unidentified, heard the sound of breaking glass and called the police around 10:45 p.m.
Local officers and two Arizona Rangers responded and were met by the woman, who complained of burning eyes and difficulty breathing. Shortly after arriving, the police officers and the Rangers also experienced the same symptoms.
us_AZ  public  release  injury  bomb 
13 days ago
Company President in Chemical Spill Facing Charges
A West Virginia executive faces charges of lying to protect his personal wealth from lawsuits after his company spilled chemicals into 300,000 people's water supply in January, according to a criminal complaint Monday.

The complaint unsealed Monday in U.S. District Court in Charleston charges Freedom Industries President Gary Southern with bankruptcy fraud, wire fraud and lying under oath. If convicted of all the charges, he faces up to 30 years in prison.

In a sworn affidavit, FBI Special Agent James F. Lafferty II testified that Southern downplayed his role with Freedom on the stand in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Charleston multiple times. Lafferty says he made similar claims to federal workplace safety regulators.

The filing states Southern is trying to protect his net worth of at least $7.7 million from dozens of lawsuits already filed over the spill and any potential new ones creditors may introduce. Many businesses sued Freedom, Southern, the regional water company and other related parties because a tap-water ban shuttered their operations for days.

"They are either outright lies, or are, at the very least, misleading," Lafferty stated in the document. "All of the statements indicate or suggest an effort to defect blame from Southern for the discharge of (the chemical) MCHM into the Elk River, which resulted in the denial of water to thousands of people and businesses, for most uses, for several days."
us_WV  industrial  follow-up  response  other_chemical  illegal 
13 days ago
BC VA Medical Center fire sparks chemical reaction
BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — A fire at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center is under investigation after causing a chemical reaction.

Firefighters were able to quickly put the fire out after it started just before 2 a.m. Monday inside the laundry facility at the VA Medical Center, located at 5500 Armstrong Road.

No one was inside the facility when the fire began.

Officials told 24 Hour News 8 the chemical sodium bisulfite was released during the fire. The chemical can cause skin and eye irritation, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

At last check, officials were waiting until morning to see how to dispose of the chemicals.
us_MI  industrial  fire  injury  cleaners 
13 days ago
Chemical Fire at Whitestown Plant, No Damage to Building
WHITESTOWN, N.Y. -- Fire officials responded to a chemical fire at the Bonide plant in Whitestown on Monday.

Officials said a chemical used to make Bonide's products was mixed to quickly and caught fire. It's hazardous if inhaled after a fire or if it touches water.

Crews from multiple departments had to use dry chemicals to put out the flames. It was knocked down in about 45 minutes.

The Oriskany Fire Chief said there was no significant damage to the building.

"We took a slow approach to this because we found out where it was, it's in one of the basement areas. It's a sealed area downstairs all concrete. The building is actually designed for this type of incident to happen and be contained," said chief Jeff Burkhart.

The fire chief said because of Bonide's strong emergency plan and relationship with local fire departments, the chemical wasn't exposed to neighboring homes or businesses.
us_NY  industrial  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
13 days ago
Fatal Accident In Texas Released 23,000 Lb Of Gas
Approximately 23,000 lb of methyl mercaptan was released during a deadly accident at DuPont’s facility in La Porte, Texas, the company said late last month. The data were released as part of mandatory reporting to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and local agencies. The accident on Nov. 15 killed four workers and injured another. All were likely responding to the gas leak. In a statement, DuPont said it determined the amount of gas released by measuring what remained in the plant’s containers and pipes after the accident. The accident occurred in the facility’s crop protection unit, which uses methyl mercaptan in the manufacture of insecticides and fungicides. Some methyl mercaptan escaped into the environment, Dupont said. But monitoring by Harris County, where the plant is located, indicated it posed no hazard to the public. The Chemical Safety & Hazard Investigation Board assembled a team in La Porte shortly after the accident; its investigation is ongoing.
us_TX  industrial  follow-up  death  thiols 
14 days ago
State fines LANL, WIPP $54 million
The New Mexico Environment Department has fined the Los Alamos National Laboratory and nuclear waste repository WIPP more than $54 million for hazardous waste violations – the largest-ever civil penalties levied by the state against the federal government.

Following a nine-month investigation, the state on Saturday said it found more than three dozen violations at the Department of Energy facilities related to an underground fire and a radiation release at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant outside Carlsbad. The radiation leak has been traced to a drum of nuclear waste that came from LANL.

A hot reaction in the drum deposited underground at WIPP is believed to have caused the Valentine’s Day radiation leak that contaminated nearly two dozen workers with low levels of radiation.

NMED identified 13 violations of WIPP’s permit – including safety and maintenance violations – and levied civil penalties of $17.7 million.

At LANL, the state Environment Department identified a total of 24 violations – including mishandling how nuclear waste was treated and packaged – and fined the lab $36.6 million in civil penalties.

LANL and WIPP representatives directed interview requests to DOE headquarters. A DOE spokeswoman did not respond Saturday to a request for comment.
us_NM  laboratory  follow-up  environmental  radiation  waste 
14 days ago
Chicago furry convention hit with "intentional" chemical leak
CHICAGO - A chemical leak forced an evacuation of a hotel in Chicago hosting a furry convention and sent 19 to the hospital.

The third alarm chlorine gas leak at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare happened right in the middle of the annual Midwest Furfest Convention, forcing people to evacuate the center in full costume.

Authorities investigating the leak say it is consistent with an intentional act and police are investigating it as a crime, reports CBS Chicago.

After being evacuated, one convention goer told CBS Chicago: "We have a lot of costumers out here with big fluffy costumes that'll keep people warm so at this point we're not worried."

Several witnesses say the leak was reported on either the 9th or 10th floor of the hotel. One woman says chlorine could be smelled on both floors.

The source appeared to be powdered chlorine found in a 9th-floor stairwell, reports the Associated Press.
us_IL  public  release  injury  chlorine  dust 
14 days ago
Ammonia Leak Forces Evacuations In Lampasas
LAMPASAS (December 6, 2014) An ammonia leak at the Windsor Foods plant forced evacuations Saturday afternoon in downtown Lampasas.

The leak was reported just before 2 p.m. Saturday at the plant at 601 East 3rd St., which is operated by Houston-based Windsor Foods.

Police, firefighters and paramedics responded, and an area from Hackberry Street west to Western Street and East 2nd Street south to East 14th Street was evacuated

“The cause of the leak has not been determined at this time, however the City of Lampasas trains with Windsor Foods emergency personnel and hazmat teams on a regular basis for such an emergency,” the city said in a late-afternoon press release.
us_TX  industrial  release  response  ammonia 
14 days ago
30 years on, chemical plant still poisoning Bhopal
The march of time can be cruel. As months and years go by it erodes even the most horrifying events until they are dulled of their searing poignancy. Even one of the worst industrial disasters of our time fades from the world's consciousness after decades have gone by. Thirty years ago, on the night of Dec. 2, 1984, the city of Bhopal, India, was forever identified with catastrophic tragedy.

A toxic gas leak from a Union Carbide India Ltd. (UCIL) plant in the center of the city claimed the lives of thousands of people virtually overnight. Half a million people were exposed to contaminated water and air. The news and images of thousands of men, women, children and babies left dead on the ground, having tried to escape the gas, shocked the world.

Three decades later, the attention has gone. But the effects of that horrific day — and the lack of accountability — remain. Upwards of 22,000 people have died as a result of the leak, but the people of Bhopal continue to suffer from health problems, and the land and water are still contaminated.
India  industrial  follow-up  death  other_chemical 
15 days ago
One dead after fuel tanker explodes on New Jersey’s I-78
A fuel truck burst into a fireball on New Jersey State Interstate 78 Saturday afternoon following a crash that killed at least one person, authorities said.

Traffic lanes are steadily reopening after the 12:45 p.m. crash involving another tractor-trailer and passenger vehicle blocked the highway in both directions for several hours.

Photos of the explosion near Union Township show a large column of black smoke and flames with firefighters and ambulances at the scene.

New Jersey State Police spokesman Sgt. Gregory Williams confirmed to the Daily News one fatality in the wreck and said two drivers were airlifted to a local hospital.

A preliminary investigation of the crash shows the driver transporting a fuel tanker may have crossed an eastbound lane, crashed and caught fire, Williams added.

The fire has been put out, but hazmat crews are cleaning up at least 9,000 gallons of fuel the spilled onto the roadway.
us_NJ  transportation  explosion  death  other_chemical 
15 days ago
2 dead, 12 hospitalized in Passaic carbon monoxide leak
Two people died Saturday and 12 were hospitalized after they were overcome by carbon monoxide at a mixed-use commercial building in Passaic, Mayor Alex Blanco said.

Police responded to a 911 call around 1:30 p.m. and found two people dead in a small recording studio on the second floor of the building, Blanco said at a news conference Saturday afternoon. The 12 people who were hospitalized experienced confusion and were choking as they struggled out of other rooms on the second floor, he said.

Firefighters found two people dead Saturday in a carbon dioxide emergency at a music studio in Passaic. Twelve others were sent to hospitals.
A man at the scene, who identified himself as the property owner, declined to comment.

The three-story facility is occupied by North End and Streets Rehearsal Studios, and has about 20 small rehearsal spaces rented monthly by a variety of local musicians and bands, said musicians who rent space there. The building is part of an industrial complex off Van Houten Avenue with numerous businesses.
us_NJ  public  release  death  carbon_monoxide 
15 days ago
The Curie laboratory and #chemsafety
From the New York Times Magazine this week, a terrific piece about Curie lab technician Marguerite Perey and sacrifice in the name of science: My great-great-aunt discovered Francium. And It Killed Her.
France  laboratory  discovery  death  other_chemical 
16 days ago
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