One patient was transported to the hospital by American Medical Response ambulance this week for inhalation exposure to a strong corrosive acid that someone put in the regular trash bins at the Metro South Transfer Station, 2001 Washington St., Oregon City.
At 5:33 p.m. Tuesday, June 13, Clackamas Fire's Hazardous Materials Response Team was able to contain the muriatic acid (also known as hydrochloric acid) without other injuries or exposures to the chemical.
"Reminder: When hauling trash to local waste facilities keep all hazardous materials separate," said Clackamas Fire spokesman Micah Shelton. "Metro South accepts trash, recycling and hazardous materials. Visit their website for additional information on the disposal of hazardous materials to keep all parties involved safe."
The incident started when employees at the garbage dump called 911 to report release of an unknown substance from a container inside one of the Metro South trash bays. Upon arrival to scene, Clackamas Fire crews quickly worked to evacuate customers and employees from the location. Washington Street was shut down for approximately 30 minutes to ensure public safety.
With the aid of Metro's hazardous-materials team, Clackamas Fire personnel entered the bay where the container was located to determine the identity of the substance. At approximately 6:50 p.m., the haz-mat teams determined that the container, which had been damaged by the acid, was contained to the waste area. Clackamas Fire determined that there was no further threat to the facility and the surrounding areas.
Clackamas Fire was also assisted on scene by the Oregon City police and public-works departments.