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Chemical leak at Bayer CropScience plant forces evacuations

May 13, 2013
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A 4-mile-wide exclusion zone was set up so that a team of specialists could contain the leak.

About 100 homes in Lubbock, Texas, were evacuated May 9 after a chemical leak was discovered at the Bayer CropScience plant, HazardEx reported.

According to the Lubbock Fire Department, a cracked 1,400 kg tank was leaking hydrogen chloride, which forms hydrochloric acid when it reacts with moisture.

A 4-mile-wide exclusion zone was set up so that a team of specialists could contain the leak. No injuries were reported.

Bayer CropScience Vice President Monty Christian said a valve malfunction caused the leak, which was detected by sensor that set off an alarm.

"The system worked like it should," Christian told FOX 34 News. "And we had employees that then started the evacuation and started contacting local authorities."
 

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