1Factory spill: A chemical spill at a distilling plant in Atchison, Kan., released a noxious cloud of fumes Friday, forcing temporary evacuations and sending more than 50 people to the hospital, including one person who was in intensive care, officials said.
The two chemicals involved in the spill were identified by a city official as sulfuric acid and sodium hypochlorite, which mixed to create a chlorine cloud.
Residents in the town of Atchison, Kansas were being advised by city and county officials on Friday to stay indoors after the spill of an unknown chemical at a facility in the town.
U.S. Highways 59 and 73 and Kansas Highway 7 are closed until further notification, the Atchison Globe reports.
Residents are urged to take shelter inside and to bring your pets inside as well. "Right now the cloud has dissipated, we're beginning to assess the situation", Cocking said, adding that local government officials were still waiting on state and federal officials to respond.
Images from CNN affiliate KSHB after the spill showed a thick gray plume clouding the air. City officials are working with the Environmental Protection Agency.
Megan Laflin, 24, told the news service: "I honestly couldn't tell if it was fog or the chemical cloud".
A chemical incident at MGP Ingredients in Atchison led to a gaseous plume covering a "good portion" of the city on October 21.
Emergency Manager Wes Lanter said "smoke" coming from the plant posed a breathing threat.
"I'm being told that those injures are minor", City Manager Trey Cocking said.
"It's not that bad here, but in town it smelled like bleach", he said.
MGP experienced an explosion at the plant back in February 2016.
The local middle- and high-schools were evacuated as well as a nearby college, the city said.
According to multiple reports, at least one of the chemicals is airborne chlorine powder.
"There was no significant damage to its Atchison plant as a result of this incident". Headquartered in Atchison, MGP produces distilled spirits and specialty wheat proteins and starches.