Railcar leaking dangerous chemicals contained, Highway 30 reopen - KPTV - FOX 12

Railcar leaking dangerous chemicals contained, Highway 30 reopens

Posted: Updated: Jul 03, 2018 07:18 PM
KPTV photo. KPTV photo.

Fire crews responded to reports of a railcar leaking a chemical similar to paint-thinner Tuesday afternoon in northwest Portland. 

Firefighters rushed to Northwest Yeon Avenue, also known as Highway 30, just after 3 p.m. and closed the road to traffic. 

The road was temporarily closed between Northwest Kittridge Avenue and Northwest 35th Avenue and reopened around 5:30 p.m. Nearby buildings were evacuated, Portland Fire & Rescue said.

A hazmat team also responded. The team stopped the leak a bit before 5 p.m.

While the leak was active, firefighters advised motorists and residents to stay away if possible. People already in the area were asked to stay indoors, Portland Fire & Rescue said.

Mykola Chervinka, a man working nearby, said he was rushed out of his building. 

"Never thought something like that could happen," Chervinka said. "We were just working, our boss came out, he saw the area blocked off, he told us we were being evacuated ... we had to drop everything."

Firefighters said the rail car was leaking Toluene, which is a colorless, water-insoluble liquid. Toluene is also a respiratory irritant.

It was not immediately clear what caused the chemical to leak. Firefighters have not released any additional information.

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