Archive for Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Chemical spill near train tracks in Franklin County causes evacuation of homes

October 9, 2007, 5:37 p.m. Updated October 9, 2007, 5:55 p.m.


Residents living near a toxic chemical leak in Franklin County were allowed back home late Tuesday afternoon.

A tank car on a train traveling east from Osage County into Franklin County leaked a toxic chemical, causing an evacuation of up to 30 homes near the site.

Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway contacted the Franklin County Sheriff's Office about noon today to advise that some railroad workers had been injured from the leak of chlorobenzyl chloride. The employees had been taken to area hospitals for treatment. It is unknown at the time how many were injured and the extent of their injuries.

The chemical that was leaked is irritating to the skin and eyes and can be toxic if ingested. If anyone is exposed to the chemical, they should get to fresh air immediately and call for medical help.

Franklin County Emergency Management, officers from the sheriff's office and the Pomona and Lincoln, Ottawa and Harrison fire departments were dispatched to the area. Employees from BNSF, an Olathe Hazmat Response team and local representatives established a command post to direct safety issues and to coordinate the clean-up effort.

Residents near the BNSF tracks at Indiana Road were evacuated.

The railroad crossing on Kansas Highway 68 at the BNSF and the crossing on Colorado has been closed until the chemical leak can be cleaned.


tangential_reasoners_anonymous 10 years, 8 months ago

GretchenJP says: "... I live in Franklin County."

You OK, Gretch?

Ragingbear 10 years, 8 months ago

I looked up this stuff on the net. It's one of those industrial ingredients that are part of many things ranging from pain medications to rice herbacide. In it's raw form, it is a colorless liquid that turns into Hydrochloric Acid when mixed with water. This makes the fumes very dangerous, as it will come in contact with the water in your mucous membranes, turn into acid, and then strip your lung's ability to absorb oxygen. Quite nasty stuff.

Lesser levels of exposure can still lead to Toxic pneumonitis a disease associated with this, and many other industrial chemicals. The symptoms are cough,diffuse infiltrates,dyspnea, acute, inspiratory rales, pulmonary edema and wheezing.

GretchenJP 10 years, 8 months ago

Yep, I'm in Ottawa, the chemical didn't get this far I reckon.

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