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Leaking sulfur dioxide, a toxic gas, set off alarms at the Oliver Springs Wastewater Treatment Plant on Joel Road in Roane County Wednesday morning.
A HAZMAT team dealt with the situation.
“We don’t know what caused it. There was a leaking valve,” said Howie Rose, director of Roane County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. His and other agencies responded to the scene.
Luckily officials said the quantity was not enough to cause anyone any harm. Once released into the air sulfur dioxide can change into sulfuric acid and cause health concerns including burning to the respiratory tract and eyes.
Rose said amounts over 50 parts per million can be dangerous.
“It didn’t even get over one part per million. It was just enough to set the alarm off,” Rose said.
Sulfur dioxide is used to treat wastewater.
Oliver Springs City Manager Tina Treece was at the wastewater plant Thursday morning and unable to be reached to see how the town is dealing with the faulty valve.