MDEQ identifies chemical leaked on I-10

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The chemical that leaked out of an 18-wheeler on Interstate 10 early Wednesday morning has been identified as acedic anhydride, which is a flammable corrosive.

Officials with the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality say 1500 gallons of the chemical were being hauled to Theodore, Alabama when the driver noticed a strong odor.

Just before 2am, he pulled over at the Love's Truck Stop on Cedar Lake Road. Once he realized the acetic acid blend leaking from one of the containers, he called authorities. DEQ crews responded and found one of the container valves had sprung a leak. About 100 gallons of the chemical spilled out in the parking lot.

The truck stop was forced to close for about an hour while the mess was cleaned up.

Earl Etheridge, MDEQ's Emergency Response coordinator on the Gulf Coast, said this is a rare occurrence. It's been eight months since a HAZMAT crew was called to clean up anything in South Mississippi.

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