No injuries were reported after a deadly amount of Chlorine was discovered leaking on city property.
Wiggins Fire Chief Jody Hatten said a city worker smelled the leak around 7 a.m. on Sunday, July 18.
The Wiggins Fire Department, along with the Stone County Emergency Management Agency and Wiggins Police Department, responded to the incident and discovered three 150-pound containers of Chlorine were corroded and one was leaking fatal fumes.
Portions of First Street and Davis Avenue were shut down to keep the public out of harm’s way.
The containers of Chlorine were used by city workers near the Wiggins water tank. Chlorine is safely used to treat public water sources because it is extremely effective at killing viruses and other harmful bacteria while remaining nontoxic to humans.
However, concentrated Chlorine fumes are extremely dangerous.
“It’s very very dangerous,” Hatten said. “It’ll kill you or mess up your lungs for the rest of your life.”
First responders feared the other containers that were not actively leaking could not withstand being transported. Because the Chlorine must be transported in a special container, Hatten said state emergency responders helped locals locate the proper containers to dispose of the excess chemicals.
Three new containers were delivered from Mobile and Baton Rouge by about 10 p.m. that night.
By the following Monday, all areas were safe and all streets had been reopened.