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August 19, 2022: Chemical Spill Shuts Down Alabama Intersection

An overturned tractor trailer caused a major intersection in Rainsville, AL to close on Thursday evening. The truck rolled onto its side at the intersection of Alabama 75 and Alabama 35. During the accident, the truck spilled organic peroxide. Organic peroxide is thermally unstable, which means it will self-react when exposed to certain temperatures. Direct exposure to organic peroxide can cause eye, skin, and respiratory irritation.  
DeKalb County EMA Director Anthony Clifton said “Once (hazmat) got here and found out how much room we’d have to work with, then they told that under no circumstances were we going to be allowed to get any traffic moving through here until the cleanup was finished…It’s like breathing a strong bleach. It’s industrial grade, which means it’s very toxic. It’s an oxidizer. It has an explosive property to to it. It can burn, so that’s one of the reasons we’re having to be so careful with it.”
Officials spent hours spraying the tractor trailer with water to keep the temperature of the chemical down and prevent an explosion. Local homes and businesses were evacuated as a precaution. No injuries have been reported.
Rainsville Mayor, Rodger Lingerfelt, said “We hate the inconvenience for everybody, but you know, sometimes things like this happen and it’s out of our hands. It’s out of our control. These agencies are doing the very best they can to get this situation under control and keep people safe. That’s the one of the main things, is keeping everybody safe, and so we appreciate their patience and we’ll have them back going as quick as we can.”

Rainsville residents return home after chemical spill; some advised to keep doors, windows closed

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