DUNN, N.C. (WNCN) – A hazmat situation at Brainerd Chemical located at 1600 South Wilson Avenue in Dunn injured a worker Saturday morning, officials say.
Emergency crews were notified of a possible explosion shortly after 9 a.m. The incident led to an evacuation around the plant for several hours.
Officials say once crews arrived, it was determined that no explosion or fire had occurred. Their investigation revealed that an accidental release of hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid had taken place. The two chemicals were being mixed to make commercial grade disinfectant used to clean and disinfect poultry farms.
One employee received minor injuries and has been treated and released from the hospital. Officials have not said how the employee was injured.
Officials say the spill was contained on site but a radius of 600 meters from the building was evacuated as standard protocol and precaution. The evacuation included businesses and four homes.
The evacuation was lifted by 2 p.m. but crews were still on the scene monitoring air tests.
Hydrogen peroxide, sulfuric acid spill at Dunn plant; release contained to site
Updated 6:12 p.m. yesterday
Dunn, N.C. — Multiple agencies responded Saturday morning to an accidental chemical release in Dunn that prompted evacuations and shut down a nearby road.
Fayetteville's hazardous material team responded around 9:30 a.m. to the Brainerd Chemical building at 1600 South Wilson Ave. to assist Harnett County Emergency Management with a release of chemicals.
Local emergency crews were initially notified of a possible explosion, but when crews arrived, they found there was no explosion or fire. Officials said there was an accidental release of hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid, which was being used to make commercial-grade disinfectant.
Crews evacuated people in a 600-meter radius around the building, which included some businesses and four private residences.
The incident interrupted a laid-back Saturday morning for Pragna Chasatiya, owner of the nearby Dawson Motor Court.
"I was ready to drink my coffee. I just had one sip and an officer came by here with a light on and he said 'come on, get out! Tell everybody we got to go,'" Chasatiya said. "I could smell it, when I walked outside."
Officers went door to door evacuating people and Maurice Seaberry said he was told "if you don't want to die, you need to leave."
"So I got my wife up, we got dressed and left," Seaberry said.
One employee suffered minor injuries but was treated and released from a local hospital.
The release of the chemicals was controlled and contained on site.
Saturday's incident marked the second emergency at the plant in the past two years. In September 2015, hydrochloric acid vapor escaped from a tank, prompting an evacuation of neighboring businesses and homes. Nobody was hurt.
Brainerd, which is based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, employs 14 people at the Dunn plant. Company officials declined to speak about Saturday's incident. Brainerd Chemical is a regional provider and distributor of chemicals for research facilities, industrial plants, agricultural operations, water treatment and several other industrie