Georgetown, MA – Firefighters successfully handled and decontaminated a section of the roadway after a tractor-trailer spilled suspected hazardous material on the ground last week, according to a release from the department.
Firefighters received a call of a possible hazardous materials incident on Norino Way, opposite the Longview Apartments, at 4:29 p.m. on Wednesday.
The operator of a tractor-trailer reported his liquid cargo had broken open and spilled magnesium hydroxide along Access Road from National Way to Norino Way.
At the scene, firefighters found a trail of white liquid stretching about a half-mile leading up to the truck. The entire back of the tractor-trailer, as well as the ground, were covered with the chemical.
Magnesium hydroxide, or milk of magnesia, is a water suspension that is used in medicine and in a number of industrial applications.
Georgetown Police quickly sealed off the area to limit the public’s access until the fire department could determine a course of action for safe handling. Chief Albert Beardsley also established immediate contact with Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and the Massachusetts Regional Hazardous Materials Response Program in the event that the Georgetown officials needed specialized handling of the liquid.
Officials cleaned the area using sand provided by the Georgetown Highway Department. National Way and Access Way were closed down for about four hours Wednesday night as crews cleaned the streets and truck.