Acid Leak Closes Ohio Interstate

HARRISON TWP., Ohio --

The Ohio State Patrol said traffic resumed to normal around 2 a.m. on Interstate 75 after an acid leak shut down the highway for nearly 12 hours.

It took about 10 yours for police, fire and hazmat crews to clean up the sulfuric acid spill that shut down the highway in Harrison Township and prompted an evacuation.

Lt Bill Peck said, He thought he had a flat tire and then realized he had spillage in the trailer.

The driver of the semi pulled over near Needmore Road as he headed north. Then, clouds of vapor started to appear.

Police and fire crews quickly realized that they had an acid spill and were forced to shut down the highway. Then, they called in the Dayton Regional Hazardous Materials team.

The driver told authorities that he was hauling three different kinds of acid in the truck. The acids had already been used in an industrial process and were headed for proper disposal.

According to the driver, there were 40-50 containers in the trailer, some of them 55-gallon drums. Others were 250 plastic containers known as totes.

As night fell, workers suited up in Level A hazmat suits, which provides the biggest protection available and went into the trailer.

The hazmat crew identified the problem as a leaking tote that had spilled much of its 250 gallons of used sulfuric acid. They were able to neutralize the material that had spilled on the ground, putting an end to the vapors that can cause nose, eye, throat and lung irritation.

The decision was then made to take the trailer slowly up to an exit ramp, transfer the other barrels and totes and take them back to the plant in West Carrollton, where the came from.

Each container will have to be decontaminated and then reloaded on another truck for disposal. Workers will look at the plastic container that leaked.

A hazmat supervisor told News Center 7 what the plastic container was made of. Denny Bristow said, Polyvinyl, polyethylene-type container. Its very thick-walled. Its not like a gallon milk jug. Its a very thick plastic.

Officials said the truck left the Veolia plant in West Carrollton with the used and contaminated acids and were headed for a disposal site in Michigan near the Detroit area.

Troopers said they do not anticipate that the driver will face any charges.

Firefighters did evacuate Northridge High School and Timberlane Elementary as a precaution, but there were no reports of any injuries.

Copyright 2010 by . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Loading