Turner Turnpike Reopened, Evacuees Return Home After Leak - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |


Turner Turnpike Reopened, Sapulpa Evacuees Return Home After Chemical Spill

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Hazmat Crew investigates semi. Hazmat Crew investigates semi.
The semi truck is parked on the Turner Turnpike just west of Sapulpa exit. The semi truck is parked on the Turner Turnpike just west of Sapulpa exit.
Sapulpa and Sand Springs firefighters getting into haz-mat suits. Sapulpa and Sand Springs firefighters getting into haz-mat suits.
SAPULPA, Oklahoma -

The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority reopened the Turner Turnpike and lifted an evacuation order for Sapulpa residents after a semi leaked a toxic gas on the highway Wednesday afternoon.

It all started with a call for help around 2:30 p.m. A truck driver hauling 4,500 gallons of hydrochloric acid noticed the tanker was leaking.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol immediately shut down the turnpike, diverting traffic away from the scene in Sapulpa.

As fumes spewed from the truck into neighborhoods, emergency personnel began evacuations, including an elderly woman who needed officers to help her out of her home,

"My wife woke me up and the fire department said we got to go now," said a Sapulpa evacuee.

The evacuation zone covered an area within a half-mile radius of the truck. School buses taking kids home returned to school if the drop off was in the evacuation area.

As firefighters in hazmat suits inspected the truck they found the problem: a leaky valve.  They shut off the leak and used a second truck to remove the rest of the acid.  

The highway was reopened about six hours after it had been closed. 

Hydrochloric acid is used in several different industries. The acid can be dangerous if inhaled. 

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