Crews respond to chemical spill near Sherwood Park
Published Sunday, December 9, 2012 1:02PM MST
Last Updated Sunday, December 9, 2012 6:40PM MST
Emergency crews are cleaning up after a hydrochloric acid spill near Sherwood Park.
Two Hazmat crews along with a Hazmat specialist responded to Panther Industries at 120 Avenue and 28 Street just before 10:30 Sunday morning.
The company’s assistant manager told CTV News they had recently installed new tanks for the chemical.
“The bolts on the top and bottom sheared off and that’s where the acid came out of the bin,” Clayton Schneider explained.
He added the chemical spilled over from a secondary container, which is what caused the concern.
Schneider said an employee saw the leak and notified the plant manager who kicked off the company’s emergency response plans.
Businesses within a two-block radius were evacuated and police were on scene to divert traffic.
The leak was contained around 1 p.m.
“We’ve ensured there is minimal risk to the public and we’re continuing to make sure that the scene is stabilized,” Deputy Fire Chief John Lamb said adding the chemical cloud was heading north towards the dump and the river valley.
Lamb also said the acid would damage a person’s lungs if they were to directly breathe it in.
“The teams are trained to deal with this kind of product on a daily basis.
“The cold weather has actually helped us in containing the vapours and the product,” he added.
Crews were pumping the spilt product into stainless steel tanks, which was expected to take up to six hours.
Roads were expected to open by 8 p.m. Sunday night.
Officials said Alberta Environment was notified and would be assisting with the clean up efforts, which was expected to take a few days.
With files from Breanna Karstens-Smith