UPDATE: COC parking lot deemed safe after HazMat incident

Fire fighters gloves' are rinsed after investigating a hazardous material leak in the trailer of a UPS truck at College of the Canyons on Wednesday, May 10, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

Firefighters trained to handle hazardous materials examined a delivery truck that contained a package reported to have spilled a corrosive substance onto a parking lot at College of the Canyons (COC).

The spilled corrosive material was found to have been contained to the truck, fire officials said after having assessed the incident.

The UPS driver was taken to the hospital after reporting nausea and an irritation to his eyes.

The leak was first reported shortly before noon Wednesday as a HazMat incident on the 26000 block of Rockwell Canyon, between Valencia Boulevard and University Center Drive, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

When they arrived at the college at 11:59 a.m., HazMat crews congregated at a section of COC’s parking lot No. 8 where the spill was first detected, while the UPS truck which had been hauling the material remained parked nearby.

Upon closer investigation, firefighters discovered that none of the material had actually leaked out of the truck.

Haz mat crews respond to corrosive material spilled on a College of the Canyons parking lot on May 10, 2017. Samie Gebers/The Signal
“We had a corrosive material that was leaking in the back of a UPS trailer,” Los Angeles County Fire Department’s Battalion Chief Anderson Mackey told The Signal.

“Our HazMat team came on, they assessed the situation and the leak was contained to the container in the trailer,” he said.

“Our main concern was some irritation to the eyes and to the skin,” Mackey said.  “The only person who was transported (to the hospital) was the driver who experienced a little bit of eye irritation and a little nausea .”

The UPS driver had been hauling at least two 25-gallon containers of the corrosive material when a leak in one of the containers was detected.

When they arrived on campus, HazMat crews sectioned off an area near a UPS delivery truck on the parking lot.

“It was reported that one container of freight was leaking inside the truck,” a Fire Department spokesman told The Signal at the outset of the incident.

COC Students were told the move their vehicles away from the incident.

Deputies with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station were called in to direct traffic around the scene, Lt. Chuck Becerra said.

The incident was near an access road to Cougar Stadium, off of Valencia Boulevard, on the north side of the stadium.

By 2 p.m., the incident had concluded and fire department personnel had departed the scene.

Signal Multimedia Journalist Samie Gebers contributed to this report.
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