Update: Liquid Dumped in Parking Lot Not As Dangerous As Feared - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/29/06-Smith County

Update: Liquid Dumped in Parking Lot Not As Dangerous As Feared

Update: Additional tests released Wednesday morning have determined an apparently intentional chemical spill at a Smith County church didn't pose as much danger as originally thought.

The substance dumped near Whitehouse Sunday was an acidic salt water solution containing ammonium chloride, not the more dangerous sodium hydroxide.

The Smith County Fire Marshal's Office says they know the oil well from which the liquid was extracted and are still looking for the person who dumped it.

It was discovered Sunday morning at New Canaan Baptist Church. That's located on Smith County Road 2138 and FM 346 near Whitehouse.

A church worker discovered the substance, and clean-up crews responded after church members started complaining of nausea, itchy eyes, and a burning sensation in their throat.

Investigators say the spill was on purpose, even leaving holes in the pavement.

"These containers that haul this are not pressurized, they're just liquid carriers. And it looked like [the driver] opened the valve and left two gouge-out marks which indicate to me a flow -- a continual flow -- not like he turned around in the parking lot and came out," says Smith County Assistant Fire Marshal Marilynn Wilson.

Wilson wants to re-assure area residents there was and is no threat of serious injury to people or livestock, or danger to drinking water or crops in the area.

Powered by Frankly