Fire department responds to chemical leak in Bay City
Emergency crews responded overnight to a suspected chemical leak at a local materials plant.
Crews were called to the Mersen building on Harrison Street. 

The Bay City Fire Department confirmed it was because of a chemical leak at the facility.
TV5 has confirmed one employee at the facility was taken to McLaren Bay Region for treatment. 

Officials suspect the chemical was argon gas.
us_MI  public  release  injury  other_chemical 
7 hours ago
MCSO: Suspected Glendale hoarder passes out mixing chemicals
Hazardous-material crews responded to a Glendale apartment Monday evening after police say a suspected hoarder was found passed out after mixing bleach and Drano in a toilet, authorities said.

The incident started as a medical call to an apartment complex near 135th and Glendale avenues, said Deputy Joaquin Enriquez, a Maricopa County Sheriff's Office spokesman.

First responders found a man passed out on the ground level of the apartment complex, Enriquez said. The man told them he'd been mixing chemicals, leading authorities to suspect there may have been a meth lab.

The man was taken to the hospital for precautionary reasons, Enriquez said. Meanwhile, authorities evacuated the complex and waited for Hazmat crews.

Hazardous-material technicians with the Sheriff's Office entered the man's apartment and found evidence of hoarding, Enriquez said.

"They were able to find just a bunch of clutter," he said. "They could not move two feet inside the apartment."
us_AZ  public  release  injury  bleach 
7 hours ago
Fracking fire points out failings
CLARINGTON, Ohio — Phillip Keevert, the only paid firefighter in Monroe County, was working a diesel spill on the morning of June 28 when a 911 dispatcher called his cellphone about another emergency.

Keevert was out of range of the county’s radio system, so he got in his truck and drove toward town. As he got closer, the radio static gave way to snippets of conversation.

He heard the word “well.” More static. Then the word “fire.”

One tanker truck was on fire at a StatOil North America well pad in Clarington. Now, two trucks were on fire. Now, three.

Keevert turned onto Rt. 78 east heading toward Clarington, about a 30-minute drive from the well pad, and saw a thick plume of black smoke cutting into the sky.
us_OH  industrial  follow-up  response  other_chemical 
Hazmat called to Mt. Lebanon senior living community
MT. LEBANON, Pa. — Hazmat crews were called to a senior living community in Mt. Lebanon Saturday afternoon.

Channel 11’s Shelby Zarotney reported that cleaning products spilled and mixed in a storage area near a third floor kitchen of a building at Asbury Heights on Bower Hill Road.

A worker called 911 about 5:30 p.m. after noticing a chemical smell, though it is unclear what chemicals were mixed.

In addition to hazmat, fire crews and Allegheny County Emergency Services responded to the scene. The spill was cleaned up and crews worked to ventilate the building.
us_PA  public  release  response  cleaners 
2 days ago
HFD investigating chemical spill in S. Houston
Firefighters are investigating a puddle containing an unknown chemical substance in south Houston, authorities said.

Callers reported a puddle containing an unknown chemical substance on the ground outside of a white building in 4700 Griggs around 4:38 p.m. Houston Fire Department spokesman Capt. Ruy Lozano said callers reported that the substance was causing eye irritation.

A HFD Hazmat is at the scene. No further information was immediately availabl
us_TX  public  release  response  unknown_chemical 
2 days ago
Chemical mix sickens two from South Greensburg
Two people from South Greensburg were taken to the hospital after mixing chemicals while cleaning Saturday night.

South Greensburg fire Chief Eric Hardy said a mother and her teenage daughter were cleaning in their Elm Street home about 8 p.m. when a mixture of two cleaners caused a reaction to form chlorine gas.

Firefighters were called to the scene along with the Westmoreland County Hazardous Materials Response Team to dispose of the chemicals and ventilate the home, Hardy said.

The pair were taken to Excela Westmoreland Hospital for breathing issues, he said. Another woman in the house was not injured.

Hardy said even household cleaning supplies, which should be used in well-ventilated spaces, can be volatile if mixed.
us_PA  public  release  response  chlorine  cleaners 
2 days ago
Chemical leak in Ashbury near Faringdon leaves man in hospital (From Oxford Mail)
FIREFIGHTERS were called after a hazardous chemical leaked as it was being delivered to a property in Ashbury, near Faringdon earlier today.

Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service said they were called to the incident just before 9am by the driver who was delivering the heavy duty acidic de-scaler.

Two fire engines from Faringdon and Wantage were sent to the scene with a specialist hazardous materials unit from Rewley Road Fire Station, Oxford.

It is believed the chemical leaked out through its packaging and gave off fumes which affected the delivery driver.

Fire crews identified the chemicals and then put them in a secure container ready for disposal.

One person who was affected by the chemicals was assessed by fire and rescue service and then taken to hospital by ambulance for a precautionary check.
United_Kingdom  transportation  release  injury  waste 
3 days ago
Manufacturing plant cleared of hazardous material exposure
Hamilton firefighters responded to a call regarding hazardous material exposure this morning at approximately 5:30 a.m. at Hamilton Caster & Manufacturing Co., 1900 Dixie Hwy.
Dep. Fire Chief Jeff Shaw said that responders coded it a hazardous material run as three people were exposed to a volatile organic chemical, but were not injured. Shaw said that responders were not able to determine the cause of exposure.
“We did some checks with hazmat detectors and did get a hit on a volatile organic chemical, but when we did a second check about 10 minutes later, it was already gone,” he said.
The exposed individuals reported irritated throats, and paramedics checked them out and found all vitals to be fine, Shaw said. No one was sent to the hospital. The department’s hazardous materials truck, one engine, Battalion 20 shift commander and the West Chester Twp. hazmat truck responded and remained for approximately two hours.
“We left frustrated, because we don’t like not knowing what’s going on,” Shaw said. Facility workers were advised to contact the fire department in the event of another exposure.
us_OH  industrial  release  response  unknown_chemical 
3 days ago
UCSD Building Evacuated for Hazmat Incident at Chemistry Lab
A hazardous materials incident has prompted fire crews to evacuate the social sciences building at UC San Diego.
San Diego Fire-Rescue officials say two unknown chemicals mixed by staff members in a school chemistry lab, possibly creating explosive material.
An SDFD hazmat team and bomb squad were called in around 5:50 p.m. to deal with the situation. Once on scene, they ordered that the building be evacuated and that those in adjacent buildings shelter in place. 
Roads in the area were closed as a precaution.
However, by 8:30 p.m., the SDFD crews began downgrading the response as the threat no longer posed a problem. 
They have since handed operations over to the UCSD hazmat team, which will dispose of the chemicals. 
us_CA  laboratory  discovery  response  unknown_chemical  bomb 
3 days ago
Mayor Hagen shocked, disappointed at Superior's hazmat response downgrade
Superior, WI (NNCNOW.com) --- Superior Mayor Bruce Hagen says it's shocking that recent hazmat response cuts in the city's budget are happening when Superior needs it most.
This month, Superior joined five other cities in Wisconsin that were downgraded from a top–tiered hazmat response plan to a tier two plan.
That leaves the closest tier one response team in Eau Claire, which is two and a half hours away from Superior.
Democratic State Senator Bob Jauch has referred to the hazmat funding cuts in Superior as unacceptable for a city dealing with 17 percent of the nation's crude oil.
Mayor Bruce Hagen says, with six petroleum based industries in the city, it's shocking that the state's hazmat funding has dramatically shifted away from Superior.
"Preparedness and prevention is everything," said Mayor Hagen, "and it seems to me that this is probably the worst of politics decision–making you could ever see."
Mayor Hagen says the city is working independent from the state with the industries in Superior to provide greater protection, and equipment, in case of an emergency.
us_WI  industrial  discovery  response  petroleum 
3 days ago
Ebola Outbreak: Do Hazmat Suits Protect Workers, or Just Scare Everyone?
For health care workers and researchers, wearing pressurized, full-body suits around Ebola patients may be counterproductive to treating the disease, say three Spanish researchers in a new letter published in the journal The Lancet. But other health experts, wary of wearing less protective gear, disagree.

Health agencies often require that health care workers caring for Ebola patients wear hazardous material (hazmat) suits that protect against airborne diseases. But the Ebola virus rarely spreads through the air, according to the researchers at the University of Valencia and Hospital La Paz-Carlos III, in Madrid.

Ebola is transmitted through contact with infected patients’ secretions (such as blood, vomit or feces), and such contact can be prevented by wearing gloves and masks, the researchers wrote.

Wearing full-body protection gear is "expensive, uncomfortable, and unaffordable for countries that are the most affected," they said. It may also send the message that such protection against the virus is being preferentially given to health care workers and is out of reach to the general public, they wrote in their article. [Ebola Virus: 5 Things You Should Know].
Spain  other  release  environmental 
3 days ago
Minor fire extinguished in UD’s Spencer Lab
A Friday afternoon fire prompted the evacuation and closure of a University of Delaware lab in Newark.

No injuries were reported.

The fire was reported at 2:48 p.m. in the Spencer Laboratory, a mechanical engineering facility of the Department of Engineering at 130 Academy St.
The fire was quickly extinguished and fans were used to help clear smoke from the building.

The fire started in and was confined to a piece of laboratory equipment on the first floor, UD officials posted on the university’s UDaily website.

Smoke spread through the building and, the officials said, the odor may be lingering in some areas.

The lab will reopen at 8 a.m. Saturday, except for Suites 131 and 133, which remain closed until further notice, they said.

Because of the lingering odor, UD said, people are encouraged to avoid entering the building until after the Labor Day holiday weekend to let the building time to air out.
us_DE  laboratory  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
3 days ago
Chemical spill at Inland Lakes school cleaned up
A chemical spill early in the week at Inland Lakes High School resulted in the postponement of a volleyball tournament and students at practices being sent home early.
Superintendent Fred Osborn said the school has a chemical storage area between two of the chemistry labs, which is built specifically for storing chemicals used in the chemistry classes. It has ventilation, a fire suppression system and other safety features which help if there is a problem. This is a room that isn’t used very often, especially during the summer.
“It’s specifically designed to house those chemicals. We went in there Monday and discovered a jar of something had broken and was sitting on the counter with several other jars of something,” said Osborn. “We noticed some deterioration of those other jars and were worried about cross contamination.”
These were some chemicals which had been in the room for around 15 years or more and hadn’t been used by classes in about as long. To err on the side of caution, he called the emergency hotline listed on the container of the chemicals, who recommended he call the fire department.
Osborn said he called Tuscarora Township Fire Chief Dave Carpenter, who responded to the school with Tuscarora Township Police Chief Gordon Temple and Megan Anderson from the Office of Emergency Management.
“They determined the best course of action was to tape it off to try to contain everything,” said Osborn. “And the bad thing was we had students in the building who were at volleyball practice and band practice. So, we sent them home.”
us_MI  education  release  response  unknown_chemical 
3 days ago
DuPont Hit with $1.3 Million Penalty for Multiple West Virginia Chemical Leaks
DuPont will pay a fine of $1.275 million to settle a federal complaint over eight chemical releases from a Kanawha County production facility, one of which killed a worker.

The Department of Justice and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said the settlement resolves several alleged violations of federal law. The releases occurred between May 2006 and January 2010.

DuPont said the releases occurred at the Belle plant between 2006 and 2011. The settlement requires DuPont to make improvements to safety and emergency response to prevent future releases at the plant.

“Producing toxic and hazardous substances can be dangerous, and requires complying with environmental and safety laws,” said Cynthia Giles, head of the EPA’s enforcement office. “Today’s settlement with DuPont will ensure that the proper practices are in place to protect communities and nearby water bodies.”

DuPont estimates it spent more than $6.8 million to comply with an EPA order issued in March 2010 and take corrective actions related to the chemical releases.
us_WV  industrial  follow-up  death  unknown_chemical 
3 days ago
Firefighters battled blaze at hazardous chemical landfill
ROBSTOWN — State officials will probe the cause of a fire that erupted Thursday at a chemical landfill outside Robstown.

Thick black smoke billowed from one of two enclosed treatment facilities at US Ecology Texas around 10:40 a.m., prompting residents on nearby farms to call 911.

Robstown firefighters responded first and calls were made for additional crews, including volunteers from nearby Annaville. The fire was extinguished just after noon.

No one was injured, said Roland Padilla, director of Robstown Emergency Medical Services. An employee was treated on the scene, but declined further medical help, Padilla said.

Located about 4 miles south of Robstown, US Ecology Texas treats and disposes hazardous waste and industrial waste and certain naturally occurring and low activity radioactive materials, according to the Boise, Idaho-based company's website.
us_TX  industrial  fire  response  waste 
4 days ago
Explosion at BP refinery in Whiting, fire extinguished
WHITING, Ind. -- BP officials have notified the state of Indiana that more than 500 pounds of sulfur dioxide were released into the air following an explosion at refinery in northwestern Indiana.

Indiana Department of Environmental Management spokesman Dan Goldblatt says the agency is still preparing a report but the initial indication is that the release didn't cause any air quality problems.

BP spokesman Scott Dean says there's no indication the explosion had any environmental impact.

Dean says the explosion Wednesday night was caused by a compressor in one of the units of the refinery. He says the plant was continuing to operate Thursday. He wouldn't comment on whether it affected the production at the plant.
us_IN  industrial  explosion  environmental  sulfur_dioxide 
4 days ago
Academic lab safety: One chemist’s observations
Contributed by Brenna Arlyce Brown, who received her PhD in chemistry in 2013 and is currently working in business development for a research funding organization. She is working on setting up a safety consulting business.
A few weeks ago, when reading about the deal that prosecutors made with University of California, Los Angeles, chemistry professor Patrick Harran regarding the lab fire that led to researcher Sheharbano Sangji’s death, I commented on Twitter about how the case affected my graduate research group: “My old PhD boss was sure this can’t happen in our lab-then he found out that I used tBuLi-things soon changed .” This of course sparked questions: “What changed?” “Why didn’t he know that you were using the chemical?” Twitter’s 140 characters were just not enough to answer fully.
laboratory  follow-up  response  other_chemical 
4 days ago
Old batteries cause of car fire in Nelson
Discarded batteries were the cause of a vehicle fire in Nelson on Wednesday morning.

At about 10:45 a.m. Nelson Fire Rescue responded to a report of a fire with batteries exploding.

Upon arrival at the Nelson Leafs Recycling Depot, crews noted that the fire had been substantially knocked down by people in the area using two dry chemical extinguishers.

Firefighters encountered a small amount of fire still in the vehicle that was quickly extinguished once they were able to access the interior.

The fire appears to have originated in a bag of lithium watch style batteries that were being transported to be recycled at a different facility. The interior of the vehicle sustained fire damage in the front area and smoke damage throughout.

No injuries were reported as a result of this incident.  Damage is estimated at $5,500.  The cause of the fire was the lithium batteries shorting out.

Nelson Fire Rescue has had a number of instances where batteries have been stored in a drawer and something as simple as a paper clip has shorted it out and caused a fire.  Batteries should be kept in their original packaging until required. Proper battery storage in a dry, cool area with sufficient ventilation can extend the lifespan of most chemical batteries. Old batteries which have lost their charge should be discarded separately from regular household trash, much like other chemical substances such as household cleaners, paint and solvents.
Canada  public  fire  response  batteries  waste 
4 days ago
WAKE FOREST: Hazmat team contains formaldehyde leak in Wake Forest
WAKE FOREST — Firefighters and a hazmat team were called to an old factory building Thursday morning after a liquid began spilling from a severed pipe.

Just before 10:15 a.m., firefighters arrived at the old Burlington Mills factory at 9701 Capital Blvd. after a crew working in the building cut into a one-inch pipe, according to Wake Forest Fire Chief Ron Early.

“A clear liquid came out of the pipe,” Early said. “The workers smelled something unusual and called 911.”

A hazmat team from the Raleigh Fire Department contained the leak, Early said. The team determined the liquid was Formalin, a mixture of methanol and formaldehyde, a toxic substance.

“It’s more of an irritant than anything,” Early said. “It’s not dangerous unless you ingest it or get it on the skin.”

No injuries were reported.
us_NC  industrial  release  response  formaldehyde  methanol 
4 days ago
57 students hurt as science projects explodes at St John’s Roma School
A SCIENCE project gone wrong at a western Queensland school has resulted in 57 students and four teachers requiring treatment.

St John’s School Roma released a statement saying a total of 37 children from Years 1 and 2 were transported to Roma Hospital after being exposed to sodium hydroxide, with the remainder being treated on site.

Most suffered minor eye and skin irritations but a QAS spokesperson confirmed two children had needed treatment for significant injuries.

“One student remains in outpatient observation and all others have been released,” the school’s statement said.

It is believed the project, which formed part of National Science Week celebrations, had involved mixing sodium hydroxide with another chemical.

An explosion occurred at an all-school assembly about midday.

According to the statement, the school’s principal Nicholas Lynch contacted families of the school’s students.

Several parents linked to the school took to Facebook to express their discontent.

Among them was Mel Thornthwaite, who commented: “My daughter got wet and I am not impressed about how long it took to be notified!! Not good enough St John’s!!!”
Australia  education  explosion  injury  sodium_hydroxide 
5 days ago
Crews respond to Sacramento propane tank fire
Sacramento City Fire Department responded to a propane tank fire Wednesday morning in the area of N. 12th Street and N. B Street.

The explosion happened near a recycling center, causing the center to be evacuated according to Sacramento City Fire Department's spokesman Roberto Padilla.

The tank exploded on a bus that was scheduled to be scrapped. The bus itself did not explode, said Padilla.
us_CA  industrial  explosion  response  propane  waste 
5 days ago
Chlorine leak contained on Ganson Street
A chlorine leak caused a brief evacuation of the ADM Milling Co., 250 Ganson St., shortly after 6 a.m. Wednesday, Buffalo Fire officials said.

The elevated level of chlorine gas was detected in a chlorine storage room, and the system automatically shut down, said Jackie Anderson, company spokeswoman.

The leak sparked an alarm which evacuated the plant, said Anderson.

Once the air quality in the storage room was restored to safe levels, workers were allowed to return and operations resumed.

No injuries were reported.
us_NY  industrial  release  response  chlorine 
5 days ago
Shelter-In-Place Order Lifted After Hayward Hazmat Situation At Chemical Company
HAYWARD (CBS SF) — A hazmat situation at a Hayward chemical company has ended after nearby residents and businesses were ordered to shelter in place within a one-mile radius.
The incident was reported at 2:08 p.m. at 3130 Depot Road, according to Alameda County fire officials.
The company is in the process of going out of business and workers were mixing chemicals in large quantities that produced the gas, according to Don Nichelson of the Hayward Fire Department.
Juan Torres, an employee at nearby Filter Recycling Services at 3200 Depot Road, said their company was told to shut all windows and turn off their air conditioning.
us_CA  public  release  response  waste 
5 days ago
Another hazmat spill draws responders
For the second time in as many months, hazmat workers in protective full-body suits were in Brownfield to control a dangerous situation on the railroad tracks just a block from downtown.

Dispatchers were alerted to the situation at 10:43 a.m. when callers reported chemicals spewing from a rail car and injured persons.

Fire Chief Dennis Rowe said responders found one man with burns to his arms and legs and saw another man jump from the top of the rail car.

The pressurized contents of the rail car could be seen spraying more than 20 feet into the air and carried northward by slight winds from the south.

Similar to July’s spill near the same site, the chemical was hydrochloric acid -- a potentially deadly substance commonly transported and used in the oilfield.
us_TX  transportation  release  injury  hydrochloric_acid 
5 days ago
Hazmat gives all clear after Brownfield acid spill
An acid spill in Brownfield sent two people to the hospital Tuesday morning. Brownfield Fire Rescue arrived at an unloading station on North 9th Street around 10:45 a.m.

Firefighters say crews were working on a railcar when hydrochloric acid somehow spilled. The workers were burned by the acid, but the extent of their injuries is not known right now.

Fire Chief Dennis Rowe says there is no longer a public safety issue. "Most of the spill is contained to a pit area. We had Wolfforth Hazmat come in and confirmed that the tank car is secure. So at this point, I think we're down to minimal danger, Rowe said.

The area was evacuated as a precaution, and a train passing through was forced to stop for a short period of time. Cleanup is now underway.
us_TX  transportation  release  injury  hydrochloric_acid 
6 days ago
Hayward: Alert lifted after hazardous vapor release at shuttered chemical plant
HAYWARD -- Authorities lifted a shelter-in-place order after a hazardous materials release Tuesday afternoon at a chemical company, and police said there were no reports of damage or injuries.

Two schools and a busy state route were closed after workers reported potentially noxious gases seeping into the air, authorities said.

The incident was reported at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at Contractors Chemical, located at 3130 Depot Road. The company is out of business but still stores chemicals at the site, including epoxies and catalysts that solidify concrete, said Don Nicholson, a spokesman with the Hayward Fire Department. The all-clear was given about 4:20 p.m., police said.

On Tuesday, workers began mixing large amounts of chemicals in an attempt to turn them into solids, then dispose of them, according to Nicholson. But a reaction spread the vapors through the neighborhood and prompted a shelter-in-place alert.

Students and staff at Ochoa Middle School and Mount Eden High School as well as residents living within a 1-mile radius of the business were asked to stay indoors and close all doors and windows. Nearby residents and businesses were also asked to turn off heating, ventilation and air conditioning units.
us_CA  public  release  response  epoxy 
6 days ago
Chemicals spilled in U.S. 23 semi rollover not expected to harm the environment
The chemicals that spilled during a rollover crash on southbound U.S. 23 at eastbound M-14 Monday were a silicone cleaner and solvent and a chemical commonly used as a base fluid in personal care products.

A fire official also said the chemicals were contained in the semi trailer and not spilled on the roadway. Earlier information from officials indicated that the chemicals had been spilled on the road.

Michigan State Police officials said one chemical was a mix of hexamethyldisiloxane and octamethyltrisiloxane. Together, that mix makes up Dow Corning’s OS-2 silicone cleaner and solvent.

The other fluid that spilled was the Xiameter PMX-200 Silicone Fluid, officials said.

According to information from Dow Corning, the OS-2 silicone cleaner and solvent is volatile and has a short half-life, which means it doesn’t present a risk to water-based organisms. It can also be more than 90 percent removed during wastewater treatment, “with approximately equal amounts going to the atmosphere and the sludge.”
us_MI  transportation  release  response  cleaners  solvent  water_treatment 
6 days ago
Fire alarm brings out hazmat crews at Miramar business
A hazardous materials team and Miramar Fire Rescue responded to a fire alarm Monday night at a business that routinely handles cleaning materials that could be considered hazardous.

Miramar Fire Rescue received a call around 8:40 p.m. about a fire alarm going off at Propulsion Technology, 15301 SW 29th St., spokesman Jose Gregorisch said.

When crews arrived, the building’s occupants were already evacuating to the parking lot. With a light haze in the air, the public was asked to stay at least a half mile from the building while hazmat crews investigated.

Sprinklers extinguished a very small fire underneath a container of chemicals; a small chemical spill was contained and the company was completing cleanup, Gregorisch said.
us_FL  public  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
7 days ago
Grupo Mexico Goes From First to Worst on Chemical Spill
Spilling chemicals into two rivers near the U.S. border is making Grupo Mexico SAB (GMEXICOB) the country’s worst performing major stock.

The shares have lost 5.3 percent, the most among 35 companies on the benchmark IPC index, since an Aug. 6 copper sulfate solution spill at its Buenavista del Cobre mining operation that the company says contains the world’s largest copper reserves. In the preceding month, it led gains among the index’s materials stock to a 16-month high 49.24 pesos.

Mexican congressional commissions are asking for operations to be suspended and that the Economy Ministry consider canceling the mine’s concession. The country’s environmental prosecutor, known as Profepa, filed a criminal complaint against the company. Metal content in the Sonora River remains above permissible consumption levels, Mexico’s water commission, known as Conagua, said Aug. 22.

“The shares have been falling and the noise around this case will continue until the water commission lifts the environmental alert,” Rodrigo Garcilazo, an analyst at Corporativo GBM, said in a phone interview from Mexico City. “If there is a temporary suspension of the plant, it could have a more long-term impact on Grupo Mexico than expected.”
Mexico  industrial  release  environmental  copper_sulphate  metals 
7 days ago
New documents detail chemical contamination of Rosedale derailment
The only signs investigators found of the chemical-laden railroad hopper car that exploded after it derailed last year in Rosedale were twisted and deformed pieces of its aluminum shell that shot out like shrapnel, landing as far as 370 feet away.

"Of the larger wreckage pieces recovered along [adjacent] Lake Drive, was a brake valve weighing about 70 pounds, a piece of aluminum rail car frame, and a fractured piece of burnt rail tie," wrote Paul L. Stancil, the National Transportation Safety Board's senior hazardous materials investigator, in a factual report on the explosion released Monday.

The document, one of 179 made public with the opening of the NTSB's investigative docket in the case Monday, stands out because it details the strength of the explosion and the scope of the chemical fire and spills caused by the derailment. While the cause of the accident is known already — the CSX train jumped the tracks after a dump truck pulled out in front of it, the nature of the chemical release has only been vaguely described until now.

A final NTSB report on the accident is still pending but can be expected soon.

Not long after the explosion occurred, officials announced that the chemical spill posed no danger to local residents, but details were limited.

Stancil's report also notes that the May 28, 2013, explosion — which seriously injured the truck driver and a worker at an adjacent building — has compounded existing concerns about contamination in the area.

The accident scene overlaps with an 18-acre site known as the "68th Street Dump," a collection of landfills used from the 1950s through the 1970s that since 1984 has been listed as a priority for intense environmental remediation by the Environmental Protection Agency.
us_MD  transportation  follow-up  injury  unknown_chemical 
7 days ago
SeaTac Hotel evacuates due to chemical odor
EATAC, Wash. -- Hotel guests near Sea-Tac Airport are back in their rooms after a chemical smell prompted an evacuation of the entire building Monday.

The incident happened at the Coast Gateway Hotel along International Boulevard.

Both guests and employees reported a chemical smell on the fourth floor. Thirteen people were sent to the hospital for respiratory irritations, including members of a flight crew getting ready to depart.

"We certainly didn't want anybody at 30,000 feet suffering respiratory or any kind of illness that we couldn't help them at that point, so all of those people were sent to the hospital," said Kent Fire Capt. Kyle Ohashi. "It was precautionary for all of the patients. We didn't know what they were being affected by so we didn't want to take a chance."

Kent Fire officials were unable to locate the source of the smell. Their attempts to recreate the smell were unsuccessful.
us_WA  public  release  injury  unknown_chemical 
7 days ago
Fire erupts after quake rocks California wine country
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) A mobile home complex was consumed by fire early Sunday morning (August 24) in damage sustained from the 6.0 magnitude earthquake that struck Napa Valley in California. Residents of Napa Valley Mobile Home Park were evacuated from their homes into the center's clubhouse after four homes were destroyed and eight other units suffered damage, according to local media reports

Napa Fire Department officials told local media outlets that authorities were still investing the cause of the fire but it initially seems to be caused by a gas line that ruptured. The City of Napa reported the area has sustained breaks in 50 gas lines and leaks in 30 water mains. The 6.0 magnitude earthquake is the biggest in the region in 25 years jolted many residents out of bed when it hit at 3:20 a.m. local time (1020 GMT), centered 6 miles (10 km) south of the City of Napa, population 77,000. The city of Napa reported on its website that 87 patients were being treated at Queen of the Valley Hospital with three of those injuries serious. Most damage appeared centered around Napa, a famous wine-producing region and a major tourist destination in northern California, north of San Francisco, damaging historic buildings, setting some homes on fire and causing power outages around the picturesque town. There have been no reports of any fatalities.
us_CA  public  fire  response  natural_gas 
7 days ago
Recycling center fire causes $10,000 in damage
South Boston firefighters were called to the recycling center, Gerhau Metallics on U.S. 58 just outside the town limits, Saturday where fire destroyed several scrapped vehicles, causing some $10,000 in damages.

The cause of the blaze 10:35 a.m. fire is undetermined, a South Boston Fire Department spokesman said, but Hazmat officials were called in to help deal with the runoff from the blaze.

South Boston firefighters responded with three trucks and 12 people were on the scene for nearly three hours.
us_MA  industrial  fire  response  runoff  waste 
7 days ago
Iowa residence hall emptied over unknown chemical
OWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Police say a University of Iowa residence hall was evacuated the night before classes began after an unknown chemical was reported and a student was found unresponsive.

The 500-person capacity Slater Hall was evacuated for about four hours Sunday night. Students were allowed to return around 11:30 p.m. after police said there were no toxic or explosive dangers. Police didn't identify the chemical.

Police spokesman Chuck Green said a male student was transported to an area hospital after he was found in a third-floor lounge.

An update on his condition was not available Sunday night, but Green says no one was injured by the chemical. It's unclear what was wrong with the student.
us_IA  education  discovery  response  unknown_chemical 
8 days ago
HazMat called to Indy hospital after containers left at desk
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Fire investigators were called to St. Vincent’s Hospital Saturday afternoon to investigate an unknown substance left at the front entrance.

Officials say someone walked into the hospital just before 4 p.m. with five 1-gallon water jugs, placed them on the front desk, and left.

A security guard at the hospital removed the containers and brought them to the facility’s hazardous material shed outside the hospital.

The Indianapolis Fire Department’s HazMat team was called to evaluate the substance which was later deemed non-hazardous.
us_IN  public  discovery  response  unknown_chemical 
9 days ago
Sumner chemical fire sends two people to hospital
SUMNER — Two people were taken to a hospital complaining of smoke inhalation after a small chemical fire at a home here Wednesday morning.

Fire departments from three towns responded to 153 Labrador Pond Road following reports that chemicals being mixed for a spray foam insulation caught fire around 11 a.m.

Paris fire Chief Brad Frost said the chemicals apparently ignited and spread to a small amount of insulation in a basement. The blaze was quickly extinguished after crews arrived on scene.

The people were taken to Stephens Memorial Hospital in Norway.

A chemical-monitoring team from Paris was dispatched an hour later to the site over concerns that hydrogen cyanide, a component of some insulation types, was present. Frost said no traceable amounts of the compound were discovered.
us_ME  public  fire  injury  cyanide  hydrogen 
10 days ago
Chemical odor spreads through Aiea shopping center
Aiea businesses are airing out Wednesday night after a chemical odor prompted the response of the Honolulu Fire Department.

Crews were called to the Westridge Shopping Center on Kaonohi Street around 6:30 p.m.

Officials say a floor sealant was being applied inside one of the shops.

The odor got into first floor ventilation and air conditioning.

One person was treated at the scene for nausea, while others in the shopping center evacuated.
us_HI  public  release  response  other_chemical 
10 days ago
Gas leak in Mission contained
MISSION (NEWS1130) – A major ammonia leak caused big problems in Mission this morning.

The accident happened around 3 a.m. at the BC Frozen Foods plant.

“There was a leak from the plant or within the facility. No persons were known to be exposed,” says RCMP Sergeant Shaun Wright.

Hazmat teams were called in from Abbotsford. The leak caused the closure of parts of the Lougheed Highway, the CP Rail line along the Fraser River in Mission, and the river itself.

“Around 7 a.m., the scene was cleared and all traffic was re-opened,” says Wright.

“WorkSafeBC is following up and investigating the cause and circumstances of the leak,” he adds. “There should be no concern for environmental impact or any extenuating exposure.”
Canada  industrial  release  response  ammonia 
10 days ago
Cloud with chemical smell settles over Glynn Academy, sickening one student, delaying class changes
BRUNSWICK | A heavy haze with a strong chemical smell settled over Glynn Academy Friday morning sickening one student and prompting a hold on the changing of classes at the downtown high school.

GP Cellulose took responsibility for the cloud saying there was an abrupt and complete loss of power at its Brunswick mill that caused the release of gases that normally would have been captured and incinerated....
us_FL  public  release  response  other_chemical 
10 days ago
DQ shake tainted with chemical cleaner
KUSA - A vanilla shake served to a customer at a Thornton Dairy Queen was contaminated with a chemical cleaner.

Lisa Chase stopped by the drive-thru of Dairy Queen at 3894 E. 120th Avenue Thursday with her two children Thursday night. Riley, her son, ordered a vanilla milkshake. Chase and her daughter ordered blizzards.

Riley took a sip of the shake and immediately complained to his mom about the taste.

"He took a drink of it and then he said 'mom this shake tastes disgusting,'" Chase said.

She decided to take a sip also.

"I took a drink of it and instantly you knew that was not a vanilla shake," she said. "It burned my mouth and my throat. You could feel it burn all the way down to your stomach."
us_CO  public  discovery  response  cleaners 
10 days ago
Fire breaks out at Parker Trutec metal group in Sevierville
SEVIERVILLE (WATE) - A metal manufacturing plant went up in flames Thursday night.

The call came into the Sevier County Dispatch around 10 p.m. that the Parker Trutec Group at 134 River Bend Drive, formerly MMI Trutec Industries, was on fire.

According to dispatch, the building had to be evacuated as chemicals were present.

The Sevier County, Sevierville, Pigeon Forge and Northview Fire Departments all responded to the scene with crews.

According to a spokesman with the Sevierville Fire Department, at its peak, the fire consumed around 25 percent of the structure.

Sevier County Dispatch tells 6 News most of the flames were ousted within 30 minutes, leaving crews to attack hot spots.
us_TN  industrial  fire  response  metals 
11 days ago
Salvage yard fire stopped before reaching fuel tanks
It was a chaotic few minutes for the crew at Barry's U Pull It Auto Parts Thursday afternoon. Employees were working in the salvage yard around 3:30 cutting catalytic converters out of cars. Suddenly a spark hit a fuel reservoir and ignited a fire.

Harrison County fire trucks rushed to the Firetower Road property. So did an Air Force rescue team. Its foam was used to help contain the fire before it spread to nearby fuel tanks.
us_MS  industrial  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
11 days ago
Explosion at Huntsville gas company sends 2 to hospital, debris flying into other buildings
HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Nearby buildings shook when a hydrogen tank outside Cimarron Composites at 4912 Moores Mill Rd. exploded Thursday afternoon. Witnesses say it was amazing no one was seriously hurt, even workers who were standing nearby.

Employees with the Huntsville gas company said they were testing liquid nitrogen when the hydrogen tank exploded at approximately 2:30 p.m. Emergency crews found debris flooded the parking lot. In fact, shrapnel landed all over the neighborhood.

Capt. Frank McKenzie with Huntsville Fire & Rescue said two workers nearby were hurt but not seriously. He said they were walking around after the explosion but still went to the hospital to be checked out. He said it was "really lucky" no one else in the area was hit by falling debris.

Employees at National Copper can agree with that. The copper company is located approximately 150 yards down the street, but that distance didn't stop a piece of metal from tearing through the front wall and crashing into the middle of the work floor. No one was hurt but they were all shocked at the explosion even before they saw the debris crash into the building.
us_AL  industrial  explosion  response  hydrogen  liquid_nitrogen 
11 days ago
Fire investigated at Oregon hazardous waste treatment facility
OREGON, OH (Toledo News Now) -
The Oregon Fire Department is investigating the cause of a Thursday afternoon fire at Envirosafe.

Heavy black smoke was seen rising from Enviro Safe Services on Otter Creek Road near York Road in Oregon.

The fire was put out by 6:30 p.m. Police say the building that was burning has arsenic and lead contamination.

The company accepts hazardous waste and puts it in barrels, which are then loaded into underground cells and capped. Materials are brought there from out of state.

Oregon Fire Assistant Chief Mark Mullins says an excavator inside a storage building caught fire.

"That excavator was in the Southeast corner," said Mullins. "It had no effect on any materials that were around or inside the building. It was self contained."

Twenty six firefighters from three Oregon fire stations attacked the blaze. Crews were rotated in and out because the stifling heat and humidity. Eventually, foam was used to extinguish the flames.
us_OR  industrial  fire  response  waste 
11 days ago
Sauget sewer gas explosion sends manhole covers flying, damaging power line
SAUGET  •  A sewer gas explosion early this morning in Sauget sent several manhole covers flying, at least one of which damaged a power line and cut off electricity to a factory.

Sauget Police Chief Patrick Delaney said the village's sewer system lost power at around 5:15 a.m.

“During efforts to repair it, an electric line arced and that triggered a fire in the sewer system that eventually caused the explosion at around 7:50 a.m.,” Delaney said.

The electric lines damaged were in the 500 block of Monsanto Avenue, near the Afton Chemical plant. That road has been closed for hours but is expected to reopen by 2 p.m., Delaney said.

In turn, the power line damage knocked out electricity to the Eastman Chemical Co. plant.
us_MO  public  explosion  response  sewer_gas 
11 days ago
Chemical Explosion in Tema Community 12 claims Four
Four people have been confirmed dead in a chemical explosion that occurred
at a residential area near the Adonai Chapel in Tema Community 12.

The victims, all men, including the owner of the house who is said to
be a sub-Chief from the Eastern Region, Steve Danso were dismembered beyond recognition due to the magnitude of the explosion, which also ripped off part of the roofing.

Body parts of the victims were strewn into adjoining houses and Police personnel had to go round picking them.

According to sources at the scene, the chemicals that are normally mixed in that house, is used to produce matches.

The Tema Metropolitan Fire Officer, William Abekah Blankson narrating the incident to the media said the Command is to investigate the actual cause of the explosion.
Ghana  public  explosion  death  unknown_chemical 
11 days ago
Lawyer: Utah restaurant had other chemical burn
SALT LAKE CITY -- The attorney for a woman who nearly died after unknowingly drinking tea laced with a chemical cleaning compound at a Utah restaurant said Thursday an employee at the eatery burned herself a month earlier on the same substance.

Family lawyer Paxton Guymon's comments came at a news conference that also was attended by the burned woman's husband, who said she is recovering but suffering from nightmares as she relives the incident.

Guymon said he learned about the previous burn during his investigation into what led to the tea incident at Dickey's Barbecue in South Jordan, a Salt Lake City suburb.

He said the Dickey's employee burned her tongue July 5 after she stuck her finger in a sugar container to test if it had any of the chemical cleaner. She then licked her finger.

The worker's tongue started bleeding and blisters formed, Guymon said. She still is not back to normal.
us_UT  public  release  injury  cleaners 
11 days ago
Hydrogen peroxide mixture leads to hazmat situation in Atascadero
A substance that spilled in an Atascadero parking lot Wednesday, causing the area to be blocked off and the Haz Mat Team called in, turned out to be a mixture of hydrogen peroxide, according to the Atascadero Fire Department.

It happened just before 8:30 p.m. in the parking lot of the Vons shopping center on the 7100 block of El Camino Real.

Fire officials say firefighters arrived to find an unknown substance leaking from the back of a 2005 Dodge truck. They say the substance was running into a storm drain and producing a white gas.

Firefighters and police secured the area and called in the San Luis Obispo County Hazardous Materials Team. People at a nearby fitness center were told to shelter in place and the entire parking lot was closed.

Emergency crews were on scene for about two hours. Fire officials say the substance turned out to be 25% hydrogen peroxide. They say about four gallons were leaked onto the parking lot. No one was hurt.
us_CA  transportation  release  response  hydrogen_peroxide 
11 days ago
Crews work to clean up after train derailment
STEUBENVILLE, Ohio-- Multiple crews were on the scene well into the night working to contain a fuel spill after a train derailment Wednesday night.
Crews say this incident could have been much worse than what it turned out to be after a train  derailed, caught fire and caused all four lanes of state route 7 to be closed down for several hours.
Officials say around 8 p.m. Wednesday evening, a train  traveling north derailed near the entrance to the Steubenville marina, sparking a fire and fuel spill.
Fire,  EMS and hazmat crews were all on scene to contain flames and fuel, to prevent further disaster.
"Within about 15 minutes we had the fire extinguished. Then it became a matter of looking to see how much diesel fuel was spilling out of the engine. "according to Chief Carlo Capaldi from the Steubenville  Fire Department.
us_OH  transportation  release  response  diesel 
11 days ago
Two injured in industrial accident at Edison laboratory
Edison—A 23-year-old man was seriously injured Wednesday afternoon following a steam blowout at an Edison laboratory, authorities say.

A spokesperson for the Edison Fire Department says that the victim was in the process of cleaning a 250 gallon container used to process facial cream when steam escaped from the tank. The victim was struck in the chest, sustaining third-degree burns.

The victim—whose name has not yet been released—was transported by helicopter from Bentley Laboratories on Fieldcrest Avenue in Edison to St. Barnabas Medical Center with second and third degree burns on his chest, legs and arms.

A second victim was injured attempting to help the first following the accident, says a fire department official. A resident of Perth Amboy, he was transported to Raritan Bay Medical Center and treated for a shoulder injury.

A HAZMAT team was dispatched to investigate following the incident, but has found no evidence of chemicals were involved in the accident, say authorities.
us_NJ  industrial  release  injury  unknown_chemical 
12 days ago
Chemical reaction causes fire at plant
A chemical reaction was the suspected cause of a structure fire at the Molded Fiber Glass (MFG) plant just after 8:08 p.m. Monday resulting in $250,000 in damages.
The fire appeared to have started in a detached 20 by 20 foot storage building holding chemicals and fiberglass parts just outside the main plant,
According to Gainesville Fire and Rescue chief Wally Cox, the chemical reaction generated a lot of heat spreading to the fiberglass parts stored in the general area.”
The structure, consisting of a metal roof with open sides, was fully engulfed in flames as the first of three engines and a ladder and rescue truck arrived at 8:13 p.m.
“It was a little tricky to put out the fire because of the commodity involved,” Cox said. “There was very limited fire extension in the plant, mostly heavy smoke and some cosmetic damage. No hazardous materials were released.”
us_TX  industrial  fire  response  unknown_chemical 
12 days ago
New formaldehyde report supports EPA's assessment that chemical is 'human carcinogen'
WASHINGTON -- The ongoing debate about the risks of formaldehyde is intensifying in light of a new report by the National Academy of Sciences that said the Environmental Protection Agency's labeling of the chemical as a "human carcinogen" is supported by research.

The report, issued earlier this month, was a reversal from the academy's 2011 study, requested by Sen. David Vitter, R-La., which found EPA's findings went beyond available evidence and "needs substantial revision."

The issue generated national attention after elevated levels of formaldehyde in FEMA trailers were linked to a variety of respiratory ailments suffered by people who lived in them after hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

The 2011 National Academy report concluded that EPA's analysis supports its conclusion that formaldehyde can irritate the eyes, nose and throat, and create lesions in the respiratory tract and that high concentrations can lead to genetic mutations. But it said the EPA failed to support its conclusions that formaldehyde causes other cancers of the respiratory tract or leukemia.

The new report found sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in human and animal studies and "convincing relevant information" that formaldehyde induces mechanistic events associated with the development of cancer in humans."  Based on these findings, the committee concluded that EPA can list formaldehyde  as a "human carcinogen."
us_LA  public  discovery  environmental  formaldehyde 
12 days ago
Green food dye shuts down Tachevah in hazmat scare
Palm Springs police shut down a road out of concern about a hazardous materials spill Wednesday, but it turned out to be green food dye.

Tachevah Drive was briefly closed about 12:40 p.m. between Indian Canyon Drive and Via Miraleste, near Desert Regional Medical Center.

Bruce Sepielli, director of engineering for the hospital, said they had a leak and put dye in the water to figure out where it was.
us_CA  public  release  response  dye 
12 days ago
Hazmat team returned to Bethlehem home

The State Police returned to 18 Paxwood Drive for the second time this month to retrieve more material left behind by a deceased doctor who collected a variety of medical substances during his decades-long career as an infectious disease specialist.

Police and hazardous-material teams were initially called to the home on Aug. 8 when family members came across substances they could not identify as they were cleaning out the home. Specialists in hazmat suits and air tanks removed the material.

The home's deceased owner, Dr. John Hotchin, was a medical doctor and researcher who had led the state virus lab from 1957 to 1966. He died Aug. 1. Hotchin had a collection of medical-related chemicals in his home that appeared to have been purchased during overseas trips, according to police.

A relative called police again last Friday when the family found a suspicious substance wrapped in a mound of paper towels and stuffed into a manila envelope, said Trooper Mark Cepiel, a State Police spokesman. Members of the State Police's Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team removed the envelope and searched the home for any additional material.

"We went through, and anything that wasn't labeled and seemed somewhat questionable, we removed that as well," Cepiel said.

The recently removed material has not been identified, but the previous batch included what was believed to be yellow fever vaccine. State health officials said none of the material was hazardous.
us_NY  laboratory  discovery  response  other_chemical 
12 days ago
Acid in trash truck prompts HazMat response
SPOKANE, Wash. -
A gallon of acid dumped in the trash prompted a hazardous materials response by the Spokane Fire Department and closed down a section of Wellesley Avenue for two hours Wednesday morning.

Wellesley Avenue was blocked off from Crestline St. to North Stone St. from 9 to 11 a.m. as firefighters were determining if the material was a threat. The incident commander said a clear liquid, later identified as acid, began bubbling in the back of a Waste Management garbage truck and producing a vapor.

The truck was stopped and fire crews responded to the scene, establishing a cordon around the vehicle and telling residents in six nearby homes to stay inside and keep their windows closed until the substance was identified.

Since the truck was parked across from a Walgreen's pharmacy, the store was closed and employees evacuated as a precaution.
us_WA  transportation  discovery  response  acids  waste 
12 days ago
Hazmat team responds to chemical spill in West Pikeland
WEST PIKELAND — A farm tractor pulling a tank of pesticide turned on its side Tuesday afternoon on Route 113, creating a hazmat situation around 2:43 p.m.

The Chester County Hazmat team responded to the scene at the intersection of Route 401 and Route 113.

First responders said the spilled material was determined to be a pesticide that has nitrogen in it, and was not a fluid nitrogen as first reported.

Lionville Fire Company firefighters said the farm tractor pulling the 800-gallon tank full of pesticide turned on to its side and roughly 500 gallons of the pesticide spilled.

First responders worked to prevent the runoff from entering nearby storm drains. Lewis Environmental Group, which helps with emergency responses, arrived around 4:30 p.m. to help clean up the spilled pesticide.
us_PA  transportation  release  environmental  ag_chems  pesticides 
12 days ago
Hazmat team responds to chemical spill
West Pikeland >> First responders and the Chester County Hazmat team responded to a chemical spill on Route 113 on Tuesday afternoon.

First responders said the spilled material was determined to be a pesticide that has nitrogen in it, and was not a fluid nitrogen as first reported when the responders were called around 2:43 p.m.

Lionville Fire Company firefighters said a farm tractor that pulled an 800-gallon tank full of pesticide turned on to its side on Route 113 near the intersection of Route 401. According to first responders, roughly 500 gallons of the pesticide spilled.
us_PA  transportation  release  response  ag_chems  pesticides 
13 days ago
Truck driver hospitalised after chemical leak
A truck driver was hospitalised after chemicals leaked from his truck near Taupo overnight, the fire service says.

The chemical leak also closed a road and forced residents in the area to evacuate their homes.

The incident happened on State Highway 1 south of Taupo airport, just after midnight, northern fire communications shift manager Michael Upton said.

The driver was taken to hospital with burning to his lungs after chemicals began to leak from five litre containers.

A Hazmat unit was called in to contain the leak, he said.

The leak had been cleaned up, the road had reopened and residents were able to return their homes by this morning, Mr Upton said.
New_Zealand  transportation  release  injury  unknown_chemical 
13 days ago
Chemical firm pleads guilty to clean air violation
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Massachusetts-based chemical company has pleaded guilty to violating the Clean Air Act at a facility it owned in Rhode Island.

Roberts Chemical Co., now based in Attleboro, Massachusetts, pleaded guilty Monday in U.S. District Court in Providence as part of a plea deal with prosecutors.

The Environmental Protection Agency found in 2008 that Roberts was storing 27,467 pounds of ethyl ether at its former facility it in Pawtucket. Ethyl ether is volatile and highly flammable.

The EPA requires companies storing more than 10,000 pounds of ethyl ether to develop a risk management plan to protect workers, the community and first responders. Roberts Chemical did not do so.

The plea deal says the government and company will recommend the company be fined $200,000 and issue a public apology.
us_RI  industrial  follow-up  environmental  diethyl_ether 
13 days ago
U.S. agency: DHHR can’t handle chemical incidents
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state Department of Health and Human Resources lacks a program and properly trained staff to assess community-wide chemical exposures like those that followed the Elk River chemical leak in January, federal public health officials said in a new review made public Tuesday.

U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry officials reported that the DHHR and its Bureau for Public Health do not have a program aimed at assessing patterns, causes and effects of chemical or radiological incidents, or other environmental emergencies. The ATSDR recommended that the state start such a program, hire new staff for it, and ensure those staff are properly trained.

“There is potential for many different types of disasters to occur in West Virginia, such as an infectious-disease pandemic, winter storms with widespread power outages, wind disasters such as tornadoes or derechos, flooding, wildfires and extreme heat,” the ATSDR said. “Man-made disasters such as chemical or nuclear incidents or mass-casualty incidents like bridge collapses could occur as a result of an accident or be deliberate terrorist attacks.”
us_WV  public  follow-up  environmental 
13 days ago
Countdown: Deadliest Chemical Accidents Since 2009
It's been a year since President Obama signed an executive order (#13650) directing federal agencies to modernize chemical plant safety and security policies. Since then federal agencies tasked with developing new requirements for all chemical facilities in the United States have moved painfully slow.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is the agency with the most enforceable authority to act and is one of the three agencies established by the executive order to coordinate a process and present recommendations under the executive order to the White House.

On July 31st the EPA opened a 90 day comment period asking for public input on ways to improve the EPA's Risk Management Program (RMP) that currently oversees 12,700 facilities.
public  discovery  environmental 
13 days ago
Mexico Says Mine Firm Lied About Chemical Spill
Mexico's top environmental official said Tuesday that a mining company lied about a spill of millions of gallons of acids and heavy metals that contaminated two rivers and a dam downstream.

Environment Secretary Juan Jose Guerra Abud said the mine falsely claimed the spill earlier this month was caused by unusually heavy rain. Officials say a construction defect at a holding pond allowed mining waste to flow out.

"At the start, they told us it was excessive rain" that caused the containment pond to overflow, Guerra Abud said. "That was totally false," he said, saying there were no rains on that scale.

"They said there would be a series of aid programs for the populations, which also did not happen when they said they would," he added at a news conference.

Guerra Abud said the Buenavista del Cobre copper mine could face fines of up to $3 million for violations of safety and environmental standards. The mine is owned by the Grupo Mexico consortium, which earlier said in a statement that "torrential and unusual rains" were to blame and that it responded immediately by trying to contain the Aug. 7 spill.
Mexico  public  release  environmental  acids  metals  waste 
13 days ago
21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -
MERCER, Pa. (AP) - Two storage tanks at a natural gas well site in northwestern Pennsylvania caught fire and exploded, but no injuries were reported.

More than a dozen fire departments responded to the blaze in rural Jefferson Township at about 8 p.m. Friday. That's about 60 miles north of Pittsburgh.

Hilcorp Energy Company says that the storage tanks holding oil and gas liquids caught fire at the well pad and the blaze lasted less than an hour. Hilcorp says the well wasn't involved.

Area residents say they heard explosions and that black smoke from the fire could be seen from miles away, but no homes were evacuated. The state Department of Environmental Protection closed a local road to all nonemergency vehicles.
us_PA  industrial  explosion  response  methane  natural_gas 
14 days ago
‘Explosive substance’ sparks lockdown at The Gap
A HIGHLY volatile chemical taken to a suburban Brisbane police station could have detonated in transit, officers have warned.

Regional duty officer for the Brisbane Region Inspector Steve Flori said an elderly resident of The Gap in Brisbane’s northwest discovered the substance at a home after her ex-husband - a former chemist - was admitted to hospital.

She later handed the chemical, believed to be about 150ml and held in a small glass container, over to police at about 11am.

“We believe the material had been there for decades, potentially, and analysis of the material revealed it was a substance called picric acid,” Insp Flori said.
Australia  public  discovery  response  explosives  picric_acid 
14 days ago
UPDATE: No Explosion in Downtown Winston-Salem
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- It was a wild Sunday afternoon in downtown Winston-Salem.

HAZMAT crews responded to 200 First Street on reports of an explosion at Wake Forest One Technology Place.

Fire officials originally told us a chemical explosion occurred on the fourth floor. They also asked that everyone avoid the area.

After further inspection, it turned out the sprinkler system triggered a fire alarm. No one was injured and there was no explosion.
us_NC  laboratory  explosion  response  unknown_chemical 
14 days ago
No Criminal Charges In Deadly Tesoro Refinery Explosion
The U.S. Department of Justice has closed its four-year criminal investigation into whether environmental and worker safety laws were broken leading up to the fatal Tesoro refinery blast.

The result: No one will face criminal charges in connection with the blast, which killed seven Tesoro workers in Anacortes, Washington, in 2010.

A Friday afternoon press release from the Justice Department said its investigation found the evidence “does not reach the exacting bar for criminal prosecution.”

The announcement brings to a close the Obama Administration’s response to the deadliest industrial accident in Washington state in 50 years.
us_WA  industrial  follow-up  death  unknown_chemical  illegal 
14 days ago
Underground Blasts Force Evacuations in Downtown Indianapolis
A series of small underground transformer explosions rocked downtown Indianapolis on Aug. 13, sending brownish-gray smoke billowing into the streets and forcing evacuations from nearby buildings.

The explosions about 1:30 p.m. outside the Circle Centre shopping and entertainment mall rattled windows and sent police officers rushing into the area to evacuate workers and other onlookers to a safe distance away, Indianapolis Fire Department Capt. Rita Reith said.

No one was injured.

“It was just boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, and then they cleared the entire block,” Mark Neyland, an operations manager for the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, told The Indianapolis Star. The agency has its offices near the site of the explosions.

Bruce Plott, a construction worker who was nearby, said he heard what sounded like someone banging on aluminum garbage cans as he walked down some stairs around the corner from where the explosions occurred.
us_IN  public  explosion  response  unknown_chemical 
15 days ago
Toxic chemical trains collide in Arkansas leaving two dead
Two Union Pacific trains collided near the rural town of Hoxie, about 200 kilometres northeast of Little Rock, on Sunday morning.

Union Pacific Railroad reported that both trains had been carrying toxic chemical cargo and that the dead and injured were believed to be crew members.

"As a precautionary measure a large number of Hoxie residents have been evacuated," police said, naming the town of around 3,000 in northeastern Arkansas where the collision took place at around 3:00 am (0700 GMT).

"A fire involving one of the train engines was reported still burning at daybreak, however it is not believed to be threatening any of the toxic cargo," the statement added.

Highways leading into Hoxie were closed by state police, it added. This forced officials to evacuate residents from the southern part of Hoxie.  

Two other people were injured in the collision.
us_AR  transportation  fire  death  toxics 
15 days ago
Major fire burns near SE Bexar Co. chemical plant
SAN ANTONIO - Bexar County Emergency Management and county firefighters battled a major brush fire near a chemical plant near Elmendorf Sunday.

Emergency Management personnel alerted all county fire units to respond to the fire scene in the 17800 block of Old Corpus Christi Highway.

A total of 11 area fire stations responded. Their biggest concern was the proximity of the fire to the plant.

"There are chemicals here, there are oxidizers, they are used to clean the fracking equipment and the wells. So they are keeping a close eye on this area," said Bexar County spokeswoman Laura Jesse.

Firefighters struggling to contain the fire enlisted the help of AirLIFE and set back fires to help protect the highly flammable containers at the plant.
us_TX  industrial  fire  response  flammables 
15 days ago
Haz-Mat called to scene of small fire near a local high school
Haz-Mat crews were called out to Redemptorist High School Saturday evening after getting reports of a small dumpster fire. The fire happened around 7:00 pm.

Investigators say after the fire was extinguished they noticed containers that looked to contain hazardous chemicals. Haz-Mat was then called out to identify the chemicals in the dumpster, they were determined to be Hydrochloric Acid and Acetone. The chemicals were safely removed from the dumpster and no significant damage was done to the school.
us_LA  public  fire  response  acetone  hydrochloric_acid  waste 
15 days ago
Firefighters Treated For Chemicals Exposure
FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) -A Hazmat team treated several Fort Worth Fire Fighters after being exposed to chemicals while stomping out a fire.
The fire was at 405 E. Daggett Ave at Jar-Texas Industries, a metal finishing company carries numerous chemicals on site.
20 firefighters were exposed to the chemicals while fighting the fire Saturday night.
FWFD Hazardous Materials Response Teams responded to the scene to identify and mitigate the hazardous materials on site.https:
Right now it is not believed any firefighters were contaminated, but their gear was discarded.
us_TX  industrial  fire  response  metals 
15 days ago
13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports
 Toledo is stepping up treatment and testing to keep the drinking water safe from algae.

With algae in full bloom and strong levels showing in untreated water, the city is adding additional chemicals to the water to fight microcystin.

You may notice a film on the water. The City stresses this is not harmful, but is due to increased alum added to fight the algae. The chlorine has also been slightly increased, so you might smell it.

Windy weather on the lake overnight contributed to the issue, blowing the algae bloom closer to shore and closer to the City's water intake pipes.

The readings went as high as .972, dangerously close to the 1 part per billion standard set by the World Health Organization. Deputy Lucas County Health Commissioner Larry Vasko says aggressive treatment was able to cut those levels in half.
us_OH  public  release  response  chlorine 
16 days ago
Chemical spill turns river orange
Ramona Yesenia stood in her town square with two empty jugs, waiting for water to replace the municipal supply contaminated by a chemical spill that turned Mexico's Sonora river orange.

Yesenia is one of 20,000 people left without water since a massive sulfuric acid leak last week at the Buenavista copper mine in northwestern Mexico, one of the largest in the world.

She waited in the sweltering heat with her mother and two daughters for water brought into the town of Arizpe by a tanker truck, but left empty-handed after the truck ran dry, unable to meet the demand from the seven affected towns.

The housekeeper and farm laborer said she was afraid to even eat local food.

"If they kill a cow, we don't know if we can eat it... They say if the (cattle) drink just a little water (from the river), they get infected," she said.
Mexico  industrial  release  environmental  sulfuric_acid 
16 days ago
Hazardous Material Crews Responded to Merck and Company
Hazardous material crews responded to Merck and Company in Cleveland this morning.

Troy Spence with Bradley County EMA snapped these photos from the scene.
He says a gasket on the flange broke.

It started leaking an ether-based substance, which is extremely flammable...
it formed this icy-looking substance.
If left unattended, it could have exploded.

"We went into the security office and looked at cameras," Troy Spence from Bradley County Emergency Management Agency said. "Merck knew where the leak was but they didn't have the crew to go in and fix it, so Bradley County fire crews went in and found the leak and it was where maintenance crews told it would be."
us_TN  industrial  release  response  flammables 
16 days ago
Delmar home that housed chemicals sees hazmat crews return
DELMAR, N.Y. – A suspicious vial was found by family members at a Delmar home.

Police said family of the 18 Paxwood Rd. homeowner was cleaning out the basement around 3:30 p.m. Friday when they discovered a small vial with a suspicious label wrapped in a towel and stuffed into an envelope.

The family called authorities who secured the area, and the vial was secured and removed by state police.

Dr. Hotchin lived in the home but passed away in early August. His family was cleaning out the residence on August 8 when they discovered chemical materials.

Police blocked off the neighborhood and removed the chemicals for testing as Hotchin worked closely with infectious diseases. The Department of Health deemed all those materials as non-hazardous.

State Police couldn’t say what the label on the vial said because of conflicting information, but the label was alarming enough to prompt safety precautions.
us_NY  public  discovery  response  unknown_chemical 
17 days ago
Disclosure Rules on Dangerous Chemicals Fuel Political Fight in Texas
More than a year after a fertilizer explosion in West, Texas, killed 15 people, it is now harder for state residents to learn whether hazardous chemicals are stored near their homes, an issue that is stoking political debate leading up to the Texas gubernatorial election.

Texas used to periodically release information about the nearly 70,000 manufacturing facilities that store hazardous chemicals in the state, in accordance with federal and Texas right-to-know laws. But in June, the office of Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, the Republican nominee for governor, ruled that Texas no longer could release the information because of state homeland-security laws.

If the names and locations are released by the state, they will reveal information about chemicals that "are more than likely to assist in the construction or assembly of an explosive weapon," according to the ruling.

Mr. Abbott last month advised citizens instead to "drive around" to chemical-storage facilities and ask the managers what is being stored at the sites, which he said are still required to disclose such information to citizens. Under state law, the sites also are supposed to email or send by postal mail the information to residents who request it.
us_TX  industrial  follow-up  environmental  ag_chems 
17 days ago
Chemical spill sends 6 Vt. Guard members to hospital
Just four droplets of hydrazine sent half a dozen Vermont Air National Guardsmen to the hospital and led to a hazmat response Friday morning at the air base. The chemical is used to jump-start an engine if a jet loses power in flight, and it's highly flammable.

"It also has chemicals involved which can be toxic if they are inhaled or they get on your skin or eyes," Col. Patrick Guinee said.

At an afternoon press conference, Guinee said responders neutralized the chemical shortly after the 7:30 a.m. spill. However, not before the crew reported an unusual taste associated with the exposure.

"No other symptoms came up," Guinee said. "Our airmen are our primary concern. They are our treasure. All six-- it was precautionary in nature to transport them to Fletcher Allen-- to make sure they were OK."

All six returned to work by the afternoon.

The spill occurred during routine maintenance. The cause is still under investigation.
us_VT  industrial  release  injury  hydrazine 
17 days ago
Morton Bowen evacuated after bad chemical reaction
BROOMFIELD – A medical manufacturing business was evacuated Wednesday after an employee accidentally mixed two incompatible chemicals in a drum, causing a small chemical reaction. There were no reported injuries.

It happened at 3101 Industrial Lane at Morton Bowen at about 9:30 p.m.

The chemical reaction produced a small cloud of vapor, leading employees to evacuate the business. Air monitoring showed that no toxic vapors got beyond 100 feet of the building, and firefighters decided no additional evacuations were necessary.

Technicians who entered the building in full protection suits said the reaction was still slowly occurring, but there were no vapors or spills in the area. The entire building was later deemed safe.
us_CO  industrial  release  response  unknown_chemical 
18 days ago
7 treated after chemical accident in Fort Worth
FORT WORTH, Texas - Seven workers at a North Texas concrete plant have been treated for minor breathing problems after a chemical accident at an adjacent business.

A spokesman for Valley Solvents & Chemicals in Fort Worth says officials are investigating what caused Thursday's release of fumes related to hydrochloric acid. Fidel Ramirez company officials are seeking the source of the release.

Fort Worth firefighters responded to CowTown Redi Mix Inc. after some workers reported an unusual odor. CowTown Redi Mix spokesman Dave Guice (guys) says seven workers were treated after the vapors apparently drifted from the neighboring chemical facility.

Officials with MedStar EMS in  Fort Worth say three of the seven patients were transported to a hospital for additional medical attention.
us_TX  industrial  release  injury  hydrochloric_acid 
18 days ago
Apple bans toxic chemicals from manufacturing
After years of controversy surrounding the treatment of its factory workers, Apple decided Thursday to eliminate the use of two toxic chemicals in its manufacturing process.
Lisa Jackson, vice president of environmental initiatives at Apple (AAPL, Tech30), says the computer company will prohibit the use of benzene and n-hexane in the assembly of its electronics. Benzene is a carcinogen associated with leukemia, and workers who are exposed to high concentrations of n-hexane in large doses can develop nerve damage, according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control.
Jackson said the company had recently "received some questions" about whether chemicals were being used at Apple. So she dispatched investigators into Apple's 22 factories and "found no evidence of workers' health being put at risk."
She said the company's restrictions on unsafe chemicals have been updated to make sure the two chemicals are not used in the manufacturing process.
industrial  discovery  environmental  benzene  hexane 
18 days ago
Chemical-Filled Tea Burns Woman at Utah Restaurant
Jan Harding and her husband had just arrived at a Utah restaurant for a relaxing lunch with friends when she filled her cup with sweet tea from a self-serve beverage station.

The 67-year-old grandmother took one sip before spitting it out and exclaiming to her husband: "I think I just drank acid."

In fact, the tea was laced with a highly toxic industrial cleaning solution meant for degreasing deep fryers, authorities said. It contained the odorless chemical lye, the active ingredient in drain cleaners.

Four days later, Harding was in critical condition Thursday at a Salt Lake City hospital's burn unit, unable to talk and fighting for her life, lawyer Paxton Guymon said. She hasn't improved since Sunday, when she and her husband went to Dickey's Barbecue Pit in South Jordan after church.

Investigators and the restaurant manager have told the Hardings that a worker mistook the cleaning product for sugar and accidentally mixed large quantities of it into the iced-tea dispenser, Guymon said.
us_UT  public  release  injury  cleaners 
18 days ago
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