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Sony Chemical Leak Cleared

By: Vanessa Araiza Email
By: Vanessa Araiza Email
A plan to empty chemicals into a drainage system at the Sony plant went array, causing problems for Beaver Creek water treatment plant. Officials say one of the chemicals released is highly flammable.

Creek near Speight Avenue where unusual green chemical was found leaking from an underground pipe.

Beaver Creek water treatment plant covers a large portion of the Flowers Chapel area, acting as the ending source for neighborhood waste. Wednesday morning it was filled with something more toxic.

Sean Gibson, EMS Captain with Dothan Fire Rescue, said, "Sony inadvertently released 200 gallons of a chemical called cylohexinon. It's a type of paint chemical that's comprised of three different components; the volatile, one being toluene.”

Sean Gison says the manufacturer attempted to release the chemicals into its own drainage system. Unfortunately, it was drained into a different pipe, instead leading to Beaver Creek.

Sean said, "It is definitely a skin irritant through absorption, ingestion, inhalation. It's very flammable; that's the biggest danger."

Hearing those dangers, residents a few hundred feet from the plant say it's a bit unnerving.

Robbie Whiddon, a nearby resident, said, "I wouldn't want my husband out because he has allergy problems, and it hasn't been too long since he's gotten out of the hospital with pneumonia."

Paula Duncin, another nearby resident, added, "There's myself and, of course, I have, we got two pups that's always in the back yard, and my husband, so we need to know more about it.”

By two o'clock workers began flushing out the system with water, beginning from the source at the Sony plant. In 45 minutes, officials contained the leak and successfully flushed the chemicals from the area.

Listed is a statement from officials at Sony:

8:30 a.m. CDT July 30 at Sony’s Dothan, Ala. facility, approximately 200 gallons of a waste solvent, Toluene, was unintentionally discharged into a Dothan City sewer. In line with our local emergency response protocol, Sony immediately notified Dothan’s waste water treatment facility, Publicly Owned Treatment Works, and initiated steps to contain and remedy the situation. The waste solvent was contained and not released into the environment, and is not expected to have an impact on the Dothan waste water treatment facility. The steps leading up to the incident are being investigated to ensure that this situation does not reoccur in the future.


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