Date: Thu, 29 Jul 2010 11:19:51 -0400
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Subject: Chemical Safety headlines from Google

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SALT LAKE CITY =97 Residents who were evacuated from their downtown apartment building while hazardous materials crews investigated an odor on the fourth floor were allowed to return about 9 p.m. on Wednesday.

Officials said the source of the odor was identified as rubbing alcohol that it appears one man was spraying inside his apartment.

Police received a 911 call about a mysterious odor at the apartment at 135 S. 300 East. Firefighters could smell the strong odor when they arrived about 6:30 p.m. and quickly evacuated all 40 units. The occupant of the apartment from where the smell originated was not at home and couldn't be reached.

Crews discovered 10 bottles of rubbing alcohol upon entering the apartment, which they removed before airing out the apartment building. The odor had reached "potentially dangerous" levels, Salt Lake City Fire Capt. Wade Rockwood said.

Some residents expressed fear the odor was coming from a methamphetamine lab, but Salt Lake City Fire spokesman Scott Freitag said that was unlikely.

"We're not quite sure what exactly he was doing," Freitag said. "Police will follow up with the man."


BLAST AT CHEMICAL FACTORY IN CHINA KILLS SIX PEOPLE, INJURES MORE THAN 300 - BLOOMBERG, om/news/2010-07-28/china-chemical-factory-blast-kills-6-injures-more-than- 300-xinhua-says.html

An explosion at an abandoned chemical factory in Nanjing city in eastern China killed at least six people and injured more than 300, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

The blast at 10:10 a.m. local time today was sparked by a gas leak from a pipeline running through the factory, Xinhua said, citing local media that it didn=92t identify. Buildings and vehicles within a 100-meter (109-yard) radius were badly damaged and at least 50 people were seriously hurt, Xinhua reported.

The explosion is the country=92s third major industrial accident this month, following an acid leak from Zijin Mining Group Co.=92s copper and gold mines into a river in the eastern province of Fujian and an oil spill in northeastern China that had shut beaches and a port. The walls and roof of the factory had collapsed and firefighters were trying to douse a fire, photographs on Xinhua=92s website show.

The supply of gas feeding the ruptured pipeline has been cut, and the fire following the explosion is now under control, Xinhua said.

The air in the area still smells of gas, the State Administration of Work Safety said in its report, citing eye- witness accounts.

As far away as 1 kilometer from the blast site, broken glass bits were strewn along streets, according to a China National Radio reporter.


FIRE RETARDANT FOULS NV CREEK, k+fouled+fire+retardant/3331977/story.html

Conservationists are raising concerns after a large amount of fire retardant foam escaped from a North Vancouver fire station and entered Mosquito Creek.

An undetermined quantity of the chemical mixture, commonly used in combination with water for firefighting, spilled out of a pumper truck at the District of North Vancouver's Firehall No. 3 on Montroyal Boulevard Monday morning and entered the fish-bearing stream, coating the surface in foam for a distance of 500 metres or more.

The liquid was released by a technician who had noticed an onboard container of concentrated retardant had leaked into the vehicle's 300-gallon water tank. Concerned the chemical would cause components to corrode, he started draining the larger container onto the ground, allowing the mixture to enter a storm drain which he mistakenly believed was connected to the sewer. The conduit, intended for rain water, actually drains straight into the creek.

When the foam on the waterway's surface was brought to his attention, he stopped the flow, according to the fire department. It's unclear how much had escaped by that point, however. The truck holds a total of 50 gallons of the chemical concentrate.


POST NOW - GIRL, 2, HOSPITALIZED WITH CHEMICAL BURNS, -news/dc/girl-2-hospitalized-with-chemi.html

A 2-year-old girl is in serious condition after being burned by an acidic cleaning fluid, according to D.C. fire officials.

The incident occurred when the girl and her mother were removing trash from their Toyota RAV4 Wednesday morning in the 2500 block of 17th Street NW, according to D.C. Fire Department spokesman Pete Piringer. The girl apparently found the hazardous liquid =97 an acid-based cleaner used to removed corrosion from air conditioning coils -- in the backseat of the vehicle while her mother was distracted.

The mother took the girl to a nearby walk-in clinic in the 1600 block of Columbia Road, and officials there called the fire department, Piringer said.

The child suffered chemical burns to 25-30 percent of her body, including her face, chest and shoulders. She is also being treated for possible ingestion at Children=92s Hospital, Piringer said.

D.C. fire officials later discovered the vehicle with fumes emitting from the open container, causing a =93very dangerous=94 situation, Piringer said. The vehicle has been ventilated and the chemical removed.

=93The teachable moment is how important it is to supervise children,=94 Piringer said. =93If they=92re close by, they tend to get anything, so the best advice is to make sure they don=92t have access to these types of cleaning materials or any kind of hazardous material.=94



A chemical fire at the J &amp; J Chemical warehouses north of town has been burning since early Wednesday and does not seem to be stopping any time soon.

Chuck Gulley, Athens-Clarke Emergency Management Agency Coordinator, outside the chemical fire at J&amp;J Chemical warehouse.
Chuck Gulley, Athens-Clarke Emergency Management Agency Coordinator, has been at the site since the call.
=93The original call came in after just after midnight,=94 Gulley said. =93We expect it to continue burning through the day and into the night.=94
The J &amp; J Chemical Company makes cleaners, deodorizers, urinal blocks and fragrance enhancers for toilets and porter johns. The main chemicals in the warehouse were glutaraldehyde, formaldehyde and the royal blue solution dye which is the coloring for most of their products.
Emergency teams from the ACC Hazmat unit and the UGA HART crew have been trying to contain the leaking chemicals since the beginning of the fire.
=93Glutaraldehyde is used for sterilization of indoscopic instruments, thermometers, rubber and plastical equipment,=94 said chemistry Graduate Coordinator Professor George Majetich. =93Since they use it for sterilization for medical instruments, I would have to say that there will be a minimal effect since it will be oxidized to a compound that=92s found in our own food.=94
=93Formaldehyde is an extremely toxic chemical for aquatic life, this includes both plants and animals,=94 said James Porter, Associate Dean and Josiah Meigs Distinguished Professor for Ecology. =93A high concentration could be very toxic to the river.=94
Gulley specifically wanted the public to know if the Oconee River is blue for a few days, that it is still safe.



 CHANGCHUN/HARBIN, July 29 (Xinhua) -- More than 1,000 containers containing explosive chemicals were washed into a major river in northeast China's Jilin Province Wednesday, and 350 of them have been recovered, local authorities said late Wednesday night.

The accident occurred around 10 a.m. in Yongji County, in Jilin City, after rain-triggered flood water swept the containers into the Songhuajiang River, according to the publicity department of Jilin City Committee of the Communist Party of China.

Some of the containers, from a local chemical plant, each contained 160 kg of trimethyl chloro silicane, a colorless flammable liquid with a pungent odor, said the department.

The chemical would give off hydrochloric acid after reacting with water, 


The 1,900-km Songhuajiang River is the largest tributary of the Heilongjiang River, a border river between China and Russia.


MAN'S FACE BURNT OFF IN RESTAURANT BLAST, nsland/mans-face-burnt-off-in-restaurant-blast-20100729-10wgs.html

A restaurant worker's face was burnt off in a chemical explosion on the Sunshine Coast yesterday.

The 27-year-old man, who lives in Cooroy, lost all three layers of skin on his face in the blast.

It was thought he poured the chemical cleaning agent sodium hydroxide, or caustic soda, down a drain at Cooroy Chinese about 10am yesterday.

The young man, who speaks very little English, remained conscious and needed no breathing assistance in the two hours before he arrived by air at the Royal Brisbane Burns unit at midday.

The man, who was doing some cleaning at the time, also suffered third degree or =93full thickness burns=94 to his left and right arms.

Shocked staff from neighbouring businesses and curious bystanders watched as a convoy of emergency service vehicles, police and a suited-up hazardous materials unit converged on the restaurant.


OIL SPILL NEAR KALAMAZOO RIVER CAUSES STENCH, MESS | FREEP.COM | DETROIT FREE PRESS, 100728/NEWS06/7280352/1318/Oil-spill-near-Kalamazoo-River-causes-stench-me ss

BATTLE CREEK -- A phalanx of government officials and private clean-up experts raced Tuesday to protect water supplies in western Michigan after nearly 20,000 barrels of crude oil from a failed underground pipeline escaped into the Kalamazoo River.

By late Monday, the downstream edge of the spill had reached Ft. Custer State Recreation Area, between Battle Creek and Kalamazoo. Crews were using booms, skimmers and other devices to keep the oil from reaching Morrow Lake, an impoundment of the river east of Kalamazoo.

Oil-soaked waterfowl and dead fish were observed in tainted parts of the river. A wildlife rescue team will set up today.

The 30-inch-wide pipeline is owned by Houston-based Enbridge Energy Partners, which said it had shut down the pipe, but didn't know a cause for the spill.


CREWS RESPOND TO EAST SIDE HAZMAT INCIDENT - 13 WTHR, http://www.wthr .com/Global/story.asp?S=12881049

Indianapolis - Firefighters are on the scene of a HazMat situation at an east side company.

Crews responded to the incident around 10 p.m. at Univar in the 7400 block of East 30th Street. The company is a distributor of chemical products to the food and pharmacy industry.

IFD Capt. Rita Burris says employees were filling a tank with caustic soda when the tank ruptured. The spill caused some structural damage inside the building and also damaged a water pipe.

Crews are taking precautions to prevent water from mixing with the soda, since interaction between the two could create more hazardous material. Burris says none of the caustic soda actually spilled and no one was injured.

Firefighters are staying on the scene while workers secure the ruptured tank and the product.



OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- Hazmat crews responded to an indoor athletic facility after nine people fell ill while swimming.
Hazmat crews from Overland Park, Kan., headed to the facility at 11301 West 88th Street just before 8:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Several people complained of difficulty breathing and feeling ill while swimming in the pool at 68's Inside Sports.
Fire department officials told KMBC-TV that nine patients were treated for exposure to chlorine fumes. Two of those treated were transported to a hospital for treatment of airway irritation and nausea.
All of the injuries were described as minor.
Hazmat crews remained on the scene to clear out the chlorine vapors by ventilating the facility. They will also attempt to determine what caused the chlorine fumes to build up.


BLANDFORD SERVICE PLAZA CLOSED DUE TO HAZMAT SPILL, http://www.wggb .com/Global/story.asp?S=12879951

BLANDFORD, Mass. (WGGB) -- Motorists heading westbound on the Massachusetts Turnpike may need to find other food or gasoline plans, as the service plaza in Blandford is closed due to an acid spill.

State Police say that around 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, a truck pulled into the service plaza on the westbound side of the Mass. Turnpike.  When it stopped, it was discovered that the truck was leaking some sort of acid.

Shortly thereafter, the service plaza was evacuated and closed off.  A hazardous materials team has responded and is still working to clean up the spill.

No injuries have been reported.



A fire destroyed a commercial building near downtown Burbank Tuesday evening, but firefighters were able to keep the blaze from spreading to an adjacent auto repair shop.

No injuries were reported in the two-alarm fire that, at one point, forced firefighters to retreat from the roof not long before it collapsed.

Burbank and Glendale firefighters also fell back from the building at San Fernando Boulevard and Santa Anita Avenue after they discovered an unknown flammable liquid =93pouring out the doors,=94 said Burbank Fire Capt. Ron Bell. Hazmat crews called to the scene said it could have been scented oils for candles, he added.

Officials initially described the masonry building as an import-export business.

No one was inside the building when firefighters arrived at the scene, Bell said. Firefighters responded to reports of flames coming from the roof about 6:42 p.m.

The potential cause of the fire remains under investigation as fire crews remained on the scene after the blaze was extinguished shortly after 8 p.m.

=93It=92s going to be a total loss, I=92m sure,=94 Bell said.

Though the shop was not built according to current fire codes, an adjacent auto repair shop was saved in part by a modern fire protection wall, officials said.


FIRE BREAKS OUT IN UOP LABORATORY - PUNE - CITY - THE TIMES OF INDIA, ity/pune/Fire-breaks-out-in-UoP-laboratory/articleshow/6220857.cms

PUNE: A fire which broke out in the laboratory of the University of Pune's (UoP) department of chemistry on Sunday night was swiftly brought under control and no casualties were reported. 

The fire started around 11 pm at the Garware Chemical Research Laboratory, located near the main building. There were several highly inflammable chemicals in the laboratory. "When we reached the spot, UoP employees had already started putting the fire out but the entire laboratory was filled with smoke," fire officer Saibaba Jilhewar of the Aundh fire station said. "We completely doused the fire by spreading foam." 

Jilhewar added that the UOP employees had immediately removed two hydrogen cylinders from the laboratory and so averted a major tragedy. 

Investigations have revealed that the fire may have started due to a short circuit from one of the projects in the laboratory. 

Fire brigade personnel have suggested that the UoP authorities install smoke detectors and sprinklers in the laboratory to avoid mishaps in future.



SIOUX CITY, Iowa =97 Authorities believe chemicals used to unclog a toilet at a Sioux City home created a dangerous mixture that sent three people to the hospital. 

Officials were called to the house Monday morning. Firefighters believe chemicals used to unclog a toilet in the basement may have mixed with something caught in the drain, creating hydrogen sulfate gas. 

Assistant Fire Chief Jim Clark says firefighters ventilated the house and used water to dilute the chemicals. 

Officials say an elderly couple and their granddaughter were taken to a hospital, and all three were conscious. 

Their names were not immediately released.

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