Westmoreland Co. Business, College Evacuated After Chemical Leak

ALVERTON, Pa. (KDKA/AP) – Authorities say a Westmoreland County business and a nearby community college were evacuated Tuesday due to a chemical spill, but no injuries were reported.

Officials with the county said the leak at DNP Imagingcomm America Corp., a printing company, in East Huntingdon Township was reported just before 1 p.m. Tuesday.

Employees of businesses in the the sprawling technology center were told to evacuate around 12:50 p.m.

Officials say a large chemical tank apparently ruptured.

“I just got outside. I didn’t know it was a chemical leak until actually we got out,” said Pam Hall, one of the evacuated employees.

The company released this statement on the incident: “At approximately 12:45 p.m., there was a spill of flammable liquids from the overflow of an above ground storage tank located inside of our facility. For the safety of our employees, and others at the site, all team members were evacuated. There were no injuries or other property damage at the site. All material is fully contained inside of our process area, and we are working with the site and local authorities on the safe and proper cleanup and removal of the material.”

First responders from across Westmoreland County arrived on scene, all in an effort to stop the leaking chemical, which was apparently flammable. Some 200 gallons of the product had spilled.

As those efforts continued, many of the companies located in the complex called it a day.

“They said that they were going to see whatever’s in there and they might let us go home at 3.”

Westmoreland County Community College, whose Advanced Technology Center is adjacent to the business, also moved out its students and staff.

Spokeswoman Anna Marie Palatella told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that at least daytime classes were being canceled.

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(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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