Manufacturer’s Road Chemical Fire Put Under Control

CHATTANOOGA,TN, (WDEF)- Fire fighters, haz-mat crews and police officers swarmed Manufacturer’s Road as a potentially dangerous chemical fire was put under control.

Bruce Garner, Chattanooga Fire Dept,"Caustic material escaped from the hose and the tank, got on the side of the tank, sparked a small fire between the outer coating of aluminium insulation on the tank, the workers immediately evacuated the area "

The sodium hydroxide was being moved from a barge to a storage tank and one worker in his early 30s was hospitalized.

Neighbors say they were concerned this morning when they saw smoke and heard sirens but once they saw haz-mat crews and Chattanooga Fire Dept on the ground they were confident everything would be okay.

Carol Tracy, Witness "How quickly everyone arrived, I heard the sirens and by the time I came out I didn’t see fire there was an ambulance here, tape was across"

Ted Long, Witness, "They were watering it down, it had water vapor coming off it, so it was hot, at the time i didn’t know what was in the tank"

Between 2000 and 3000 gallons of the chemical spilled out and filled  an earthen dike surround the tank.

Firefighters used water on the chemical fire until a valve could be closed.

UTC Chemist Tom Rybolt says the JIT worker was lucky to only suffer minor injuries.

"If you are using it at home like draino which contains sodium hydroxide you of course need to use eye and hand protection but of course if it gets on your skin it needs to be washed off"

Manufacturers Road was reopened at noon and the plant worker was taken to Erlanger Medical Center.

This is the second such incident in our area in recent days after a worker at a Dalton plant was injured in a chemical explosion at MFG Chemicals Monday.

Categories: Local News

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