A fire caused by a carbon spill outside the Clinton Water treatment plant forced emergency crews to shut down a one-mile stretch of Wakarusa Drive for a brief time this morning.
Jeanette Klamm, utilities program manager with the city of Lawrence, said the spill would not "affect the quality of drinking water at all."
Hazmat crews were called to the plant, 2101 Wakarusa Drive, shortly before 10 a.m. -- and remained on the scene for more than hours to handle periodic re-ignition of the carbon.
Carbon looks like black baby powder, Klamm said.
"Basically it gets rid of the fishy, muddy taste that would be in the water typically," she said.
Utilities director Dave Wagner said a hose ruptured on a truck unloading the carbon into a storage, sparking the initial fire.