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Hazmat situation reported in Niagara Falls Wegmans parking lot, prompting evacuations

Posted at 6:33 AM, Oct 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-24 19:00:53-04

UPDATE: The shelter in place has been lifted for all affected areas, according to the Niagara County Sheriff's Office. Richmond Avenue remains closed. The Wegmans on Military Road in Niagara Falls is set to re-open on Wednesday at 7am. This follows a Haz-Mat situation that began Monday night in the Wegmans parking lot.

  • The tractor trailer was carrying liquid hydrogen, which is highly flammable
  • The truck hit a light pole while trying to turn around in a parking lot
  • Officials still need to stop the leak, remove the truck from against the pole, and fully drain the hydrogen from the truck -- the leak is not yet contained
  • Emergency Service will likely work to contain the leak for 12 to 24 hours
  • Niagara Falls Airport and Military Road will be closed today
  • Neighborhood evacuations COULD happen but are not yet
  • The Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls is closed for the day

Original: A late-night crash outside of the Wegmans in Niagara Falls prompted hazmat crews to clean up a spill overnight.

Emergency workers tell us around 10:00 Monday night, a hydrogen tanker truck crashed into a light pole in the lot, shearing off the side of the tank.

Hydrogen gas then began leaking out of it.   

Crews blocked off the scene, and the store was evacuated while they waited for another truck to come help clean up the spill and unload the rest of the gas.

 "As far as evacuations and removing people from the neighborhood, it was a lot easier," said Director of Niagara County Emergency Services Jonathan Schultz. "Many people did leave the area right when it happened, when they saw what happened so we got very fortunate with that."

Fortunately, we're told there's no threat to the public. 

The Niagara County Department of Health and the Department of Environmental Conservation are now monitoring the situation.