AUTHORITIES: Chemical Spill No Danger To Community

A Duplin County highway was closed Friday after a hazardous chemical spill shut it down and forced the evacuation of some nearby residents.

The accident happened just before 8:00 a.m. on Highway 403 east of Faison. Six nearby homes were evacuation as a precaution.

Authorities say a panel truck out of Vanceboro had two 330 gallon containers on board when it flipped over.

One contained hypochlorite and the other was a caustic acid. The container containing hypochlorite actually spilled due to the accident. They say there is no threat to the community.

Troopers say the Amerochem truck was going around a curve when the driver over corrected and truck then turned over. Driver Mike Noriago was the only person injured.

Authorities said the two schools in the area are more than a mile away and that there is no threat to students.

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A Duplin County highway is shutdown after a tractor trailer overturned Friday morning.

The D.O.T. says both lanes of Highway 403 east of Faison are closed due to a hazmat situation. The road is closed between between North Duplin School Road and Beautancus Road.

Emergency management director Brian Pearce tells WITN News that the truck contains hypochlorite solution and sodium hydroxide. He says a team from Wilmington is headed there to cleanup the spill. Authorities say there may be other chemicals involved and plan to update the media sometime after noon.

Pearce says the accident happened just before 8:00 a.m. and one person was sent to Duplin General Hospital with what he called non life-threatening injuries.

The spill is near North Duplin Elementary School, while North Duplin High School is a couple of miles away. Authorities say the schools are not impacted by the spill and the school system says it doesn't expect a problem with school buses leaving the two schools, even though the road is closed.

The Centers For Disease Control says sodium hydroxide, also called caustic soda or lye, is noncombustible but can generate sufficient heat to ignite combustible materials.

There is no posted detour for the closure which is expected to last until 5:00 p.m.

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