Thousands Of Gallons Of Hydrochloric Acid Spill In Ohio

TWINSBURG, Ohio (AP) -- Workers at 75 to 100 businesses were told to stay home Thursday morning while contractors worked to clean a hydrochloric acid spill, a spokesman for the Twinsburg Fire Department said.

The spill Wednesday released 5,000 to 10,000 gallons of the acid into a containment area at Univar USA Inc., a chemical distribution company in an industrial complex about 15 southeast of Cleveland.

Hydrochloric acid can cause severe burns in its liquid form and respiratory problems when the vapor is inhaled.

Fire spokesman Marcus Ketner said the businesses were evacuated Wednesday and none was allowed to reopen Thursday morning.

Contractors were neutralizing and removing the acid, Ketner said, and officials from the state and federal Environmental Protection Agencies were monitoring the air for fumes.

A truck driver who was near the tank when it broke open was taken to a hospital with injuries, fire Capt. Tim Morgan said. Fire officials and Sagamore Hills Medical Center would not release his name or condition.

No one else was hurt and no homes were affected, Ketner said.

Fire officials said they were not certain how the 20,000-gallon fiberglass tank broke into three pieces.

Calls to the company seeking comment were not answered Thursday.