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Published: Thursday, 3/10/2005

Ohio-bound acid tankers ruled safe

Two railroad tank cars carrying waste acid similar to one that leaked last weekend in Salt Lake City were located in Toledo this week and found to be safe, shipper and railroad representatives said yesterday.

One of three railcars that Phillips Services Corp. of Seattle loaded with a waste acid solution at a terminal in Nevada last month for shipment to the Vickery Environmental Inc. disposal facility in Sandusky County developed a leak in Utah.

The leaking rail car prompted Sunday's evacuation of 6,000 people from a nearby neighborhood and closed part of I-15 for about a day. No one was hurt.

The other two cars were traced to a truck-rail transfer terminal on Oakdale Avenue in East Toledo, where they were inspected yesterday and found to be in sound condition, said Gary Sease, a spokesman for CSX Transportation, which operates the local terminal.

Barbara Smith, a Phillips spokesman, said after the inspection, the waste was transferred as planned into tank trucks for final delivery to Vickery Environmental, a facility where liquid hazardous waste is injected into rock formations half a mile or more below the surface.

Investigators are trying to determine why the acid waste ate through the lining and metal shell of one tank car, but did not harm the two that made it to Ohio without incident.

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