Multiple units respond to chemical leak in Morgantown

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. –  Multiple units responded to a chemical leak at the Morgantown Industrial Park Friday afternoon on the grounds of the SI Group, Inc.

Senior Manager, Brand and Communications, Challen Demartino released the following statement:

Earlier today, our Morgantown, WV site experienced a leak of PCL3. SI Group, together with the chemical’s supplier, took immediate action to stop the leak. As a precautionary measure, we notified first responders and the appropriate regulatory agencies. There were no reported injuries. We will continue to monitor the situation closely. As always, the safety and well-being of our employees and the Morgantown community is our primary concern.

The SI Group is a manufacturer of chemicals used in active pharmaceutical ingredients, abrasives, adhesives, automotive and consumer product applications.

MECCA 911 Executive Director Jim Smith said volunteers from Granville, Westover, and River Road Fire Departments all responded.

“At about 1:40 p.m., 911 was called by representatives of the SI Group in the industrial park,” Smith said. “In reference to a spill they had on site at their facility.”

PCL3, or phosphorus trichloride, is a colorless fuming liquid that reacts violently with water. The reaction creates phosphoric acid and hydrogen chloride. The liquid and its byproducts are highly corrosive to the skin, eyes, and lungs if inhaled.

“SI Group representatives, along with the local volunteer fire department, responded to the scene, and the SI Group had contained the spill on site,” Smith said.

According to Smith, no injuries have been reported, and the scene was cleared by midafternoon.

“I believe they were there for about an hour, and there were no reported injuries that we’re aware of,” Smith said.